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Cornell IDlniversit^ 


1Rew ^ovf{ S tate do llege of Hgriculture 

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Cornell University 

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tine Cornell University Library. 

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IRemintscences an5 Hnect>otes 




regent's park 








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EicHAED Clay & Boss, Limited, 
London & Bungay. 

3B8 permission, seMcates 







"and so had ample OPPORTUNITIES OF 






My father, by his will, devised all his books, papers, 
writings, drawings, and scientific publications to me for 
the purpose of publishing his personal experiences with 
wild animals in captivity, and interesting anecdotes, etc., 
connected with his life. 

I may say that the materials for this work, when placed 
in my hands, were in such a state of chaos that I began 
to despair of ever being able to get them into any form 
for publication, but by careful study of the fragmentary 
papers and rough notes, I have, I hope, succeeded in my 
humble efforts to bring together an amount of readable 
matter which may prove interesting, useful, and instructive 
to the reader. 

Much of the matter herein published appeared in Land 
aiid Water, The Field, Proceedings of the Zoological Society, 
Punch, and other publications, either anonymously, or 
under his nom-de-plume " D. A. B.," and others in his own 

I must take this opportunity of acknowledging the 
kindness of the Council of the Zoological Society of 
London, of the Proprietors of Land and Water, of The 
Field, and of Punch, for allowing me to reproduce my 
father's papers, etc. To Dr. P. L. Sclater and F. H. 
Waterhouse, Esq., and to my brother-in-law Mr. Albert 


Goodwin, F.Z.S., I am greatly indebted for much valuable 
assistance in carrying out my father's wishes. 

The principal illustrations — some of which have been 
taken from E. Griset's original fancy drawings, now in 
my possession — of events which have from time to time 
occurred in the Zoological Gardens, are by Mr. A. J. 

I have a great number of letters in which the writers 
ask a large and varied series of interesting zoological 
questions of my father, and it has occurred to me that at 
some future period I might be able to compile this corre- 
spondence by giving the questions and the answers thereto, 
provided I could secure the loan of the answers, or copies 
of them, from those persons in whose possession they are. 

I should, therefore, feel very grateful if a copy, or the 
original, of all the interesting letters written by my father 
could be sent to me by the recipients for reproduction 
among other material which I may think of publishing 

It will be understood that all those who so desire shall 
have the original letters returned to them. 

In conclusion, I would mention that I have ventured to 
record in this volume my own observations and remarks, 
which I have thought would be interesting, not only to 
those who were intimately associated with my late father, 
but also to those who knew him simply by repute. 

Edwaed Baetlett. 

15 Bartholomew Road, 
London, N. IV. 
March 1898. 



APES ... 

































ARMADILLOS ... ... ... ... ... ... 179 

REPTILE-HOUSE ... ... ... .. ... 182 

TORTOISES ... ... ... ... ... ... 184 

THE HABITS OF LIZARDS ... ... ... ... 191 

CHAMELEONS ... ... ... ... ... ... 196 

THE EXTRAVAGANT FROG ... ... ... ... 200 




NORWEGIAN PONIES ... ... ... ... ... 212 

HYBRIDISATION ... ... ... ... ... 214 

HIBERNATION ... ... ... ... ... 220 

MIGRATION ... ... ... ... ... ... 228 

INCUBATION ... ... ... ... ... ... 236 


BOVINE ANIMALS ... ... ... ... ... 242 

HORNED ANIMALS ... ... ... ... ... 244 



HORSE-DEALING ... ... ... ... ... 258 

SERPENTS ... ... ... ... ... ... 260 


CASSOWARIES ... ... ... ... ... 277 

GREAT BUSTARD ... ... ... ... ... 278 

owen's APTERYX ... ... ... ... ... 280 


REEVES's ... ... ... ... ... ... 283 

ON REARING ... ... ... ... .:. 288 

STORKS ... ... ... ... ... ... 292 

THE TRUMPETER ... ... ... ... ... 294 

SWANS ... ... ... ... ... ... 295 

BIRDS OP PARADISE ... ... ... ... ... 298 

EAGLES AND FALCONS ... ... ... ... ... 30O 

OWLS ... ... ... ... ... ... 303 

THE WATER OUZEL, OR DIPPER... ... ... ... 308 

HABITS OP BIRDS ... ... ... ... ... 311 
















CUTTING lion's claws 
LANCING jumbo's FACE ... 

playing with ehinoceeos 
cutting hoen off ehinoceeos 
moving two rhinoceroses 
ehinoceeos in the ice ... 
stealing baby hippo 
beavers at work 
japanese masked pig 
red eivee hog ... 
14, 15. chimpanzee's wedding 
bartlett's baby 

'jenny,' andaman monkey 
beuin at large 
great ant-eatee 
reducing bullet-hole ... 
the watchman ... 
darter, oe snake-bied ... 


... 21 

To face p. 27 



... 99 
... 112 
... 116 
137, 138, 139 
... 142 
... 144 
... 148 
To face p. 154 
... 173 
... 209 
... 275 
... 317 



Abraham dee Bartlett was born on October 27, 1812. 
He died on May 7, 1897, in his eighty-fifth year, after 
a long and painful illness, and was laid to rest in the 
family grave in Highgate Cemetery. 

I have succeeded in collecting from among some scraps of 
paper the following notes made by my father, and which I 
reproduce as nearly as possible in the original words: — ■ 

" My origin is a very humble one. My father (John Bartlett) 
was apprenticed to and, after serving his apprenticeship, em- 
ployed by tlie father of one of the greatest of English painters, 
whose name was Turner. But my father, as a tonsorial artist, 
used the brush upon living portraits which are no more, while 
young Turner's brusli was wielded in oil-colour on canvas to 
represent living portraits, and consequently the wonderful pro- 
ductions of his brush are to this day preserved. 

" I liad, however, one opportunity which laid the foundation 
of, and the stepping-stone to, my insatiable love for animals. 
Mr. Turner lived in Exeter Street, Strand, and the wonderful 
collection of wild beasts was then at Exeter 'Cliange. It was 
here that I was, during my infancy, introduced to wild animals. 
Mr. Cross, the proprietor, being u, great friend of my father, 
allowed me a free entree to that very remarkable and interesting 
menagerie. In consequence of my early introduction to wild 
animals, almost before I could walk, I being allowed to crawl 
about in the beast-room of that menagerie, playing witli young 
lions and other animals that were not likely to harm me, I have 
not the remotest recollection of seeing for the first time lions, 



tigers, elephants, or any other wild beasts, simply because I 
was almost from my birth among them. Since then I have had 
the good fortune to have the management of the extensive col- 
lection of the Zoological Society, and the familiarity with wild 
beasts in my infancy has been of invaluable service to me. 

"During the early period of my life, Mr. Cross, noticing how 
fond I was of living birds and other animals, kindly offered me 
the dead bodies of some of the birds which I was so fond of 
feeding. This led me to endeavour to save their beautiful 
feathers and skins from decay. I was not long in being able to 
take off and prepare their skins so as to preserve them for future 
use. The result of this was that I became a successful taxidermist. 

"It was from about 1820 to 1826 that I was allowed to walk 
about the beast-room, as it was then called, at Exeter 'Change. 
My next seven or eight years were less agreeable, having been 
apprenticed in 1826 to my father John Bartlett, hairdresser and 
brush-maker of 83 Drury Lane, a business I most heartily de- 
tested, although I used to amuse myself by preserving birds, 
etc., in my own private room in the house. Somewhere about 
1833 or 1834 I determined again to seek the society of wild 
animals ; but as I could not offer myself as a keeper, and as I 
had no means of becoming a proprietor, what was I to do ? It 
then occurred to me that I could become a taxidermist ; ha^dng 
so early taken to wild animals, it was obvious to me that I 
must live among them without being one myself, and tliis I could 
do by preserving specimens of Nature's most beautiful works. 

"My introduction to the Zoological Society was through a 
very able physician, Mr. Anthony White of Parliament Street. 
I thus became acquainted with Mr. Yarrell, W. Ogilby, John 
Gould, W. Gillett, and others (the Society's Museum was in 
Bruton Street at this period), and I was a correspondent of 
Mr. D. W. Mitchell, who then resided in Cornwall. Now Mr. 
Mitchell came to London, and learned from me much about the 
affairs of the Society. 

"This resulted in his obtaining the Secretaryship, greatly to 
my astonishment. He did not fail, however, to consult me upon 
the subject of the future prosperity of the Society, and this led 
to the opening of the Gardens to the public on payment of six- 
pence, on Mondays. The success of this concession to the public 
has undoubtedly brought about the popularity of the collection 
and its advancement to its present condition. 

" My introduction to the authorities of the British Museum, 



was very funny. An old barber who attended to Sir Henry 
Ellis, then Governor of the British Museum, undertook to in- 
troduce me to Sir Henry, who then and there introduced me to 
Dr. J. E. Gray (?) or his predecessor. 

" I became acquainted with Dr. J. E. Gray, Mr. G. Gray, Dr. 
Mantell, Prof. Owen, the Dean of Westminster, the Bishop of 
Oxford, Sir Charles Lyell, Charles Darwin, Prof. Huxley, P. 
Fuller, Yarrell, Ogilby, Grould, Blyth, and Sir Joseph Paxton. 
These were the names of a few of those that I have worked with, 
or worked for, and most of them acknowledged my assistance. 

" I have already described my early introduction to the 
menagerie at Exeter 'Change, and how, during my boyhood, I 
saw from time to time birds that had died in the menagerie, 
which were given to me on my expressing a desire to preserve 
their skins and feathers. I gradually became an expert in 
skinning and preparing these creatures, and in the course of 
time I succeeded in mounting, or, as it is commonly called, 
stuffing, various specimens. My fondness for this art induced 
me to commence to obtain a livelihood at it, in which I succeeded 
beyond my expectations. In the Exhibition of 1851 I was 
fortunate enough to be awarded the first prize for my specimens 
of taxidermy which I exhibited, viz. : — Eagle under glass shade, 
diver under glass shade (the property of her Majesty the 
Queen), snowy owl, Mandarin duck, Japanese teal, pair of 
Impeyan pheasants, sleeping ourang-utang, sun bittern, musk 
deer, cockatoo, foxes ; carved giraffe ; two bronze medals from 
the Zoological Society ; model of dodo ; dog and deer ; crowned 
pigeons ; leopard and wolf." 


The earliest record which I can find respecting the 
restoration of the Dodo by my father, is contained in 
a letter to H. E. Strickland, which I copy : — 

"16a, Great College Street, Camden Town, 

" September 25, 1848. 

" Sir, — I beg respectfully to inform you that I have just 
completed what appears to me a perfect restoration of the 
long-lost Dodo, and am anxious that you should be the first 
person to see it. I shall feel much obliged if you will have 



the kindness by return of post to let me know if tliero is any 
hope of your calling at my house for that purpose. You may 
feel some surprise at the suddenness of this announcement and 
my not having shown it to any one, or allowed any person to 
know it was in progress. My reason for this was liaving long 
studied the subject, carefully examined all the parts, the paint- 
ings, etc. (I visited the Hague last year for the purpose of 
examining the picture in that collection), and formed my opinion 
respecting the bird, I commenced it at once, taking care no part 
should be seen until it was complete, for fear the views of others 
might differ from my own and I might be confused ; again, the 
work being attended with much difficulty, requiring considerable 
skill, much time and perseverance, I was fearful of being 
annoyed by the impatience of my friends Jiad they known it 
was in progress. As you already know, Dr. Melville lived in 
my house several months and wrote the second part of the Dodo 
book here, yet, to this hour, has no idea that I had it in hand. 
You will see that I possessed peculiar advantages during the 
time Dr. Melville lived here, having the head and foot from 
Oxford for his use, and he kindly allowed me to examine these 
parts whenever I pleased. I thus had the opportunity of ex- 
amining the head more than once in a wet state, an advantage 
that may never occur again to any one (it was soaked in water 
by Dr. Melville for the purpose of turning the skin over the 
skull to display the bony structure). In this state it was of the 
greatest use to me, and enabled me to form a more correct idea 
of the bird's head than 1 could gain by any other means, and I 
finished my model of the head before the real liead left my house, 
so that I had an opportunity of comparing them. 

" I had an equally good chance with the Didunculus, which Dr. 
Melville placed in my hands for the purpose of obtaining the 
shdl and leg-bones, which I did and afterwards replaced them. 
This added much to my knowledge respecting what I might 
expect was the natural size, form and condition of tlie hointj part 
of the bill of the Dodo, and I finished it accordingly, quite to 
my own satisfaction ; and I hope when seen by you and others 
competent to judge, it will be considered sufficiently perfect and 
complete to justify the great amount of time I have devoted 
to it. 

" I should feel much obliged if you would have the kindness to 
obtain for me a cast of the Dodo's head and foot to put by the 
side of the model." 



The number of British exhibitors is thirteen. Of these the 
following deserve especial notice. A. D. Bartlett (291, p. 817) 
exhibits an ingenious example of the art in the constructed 
figure of the Dodo — a bird which was once a native of Mauritius, 
and found there in considerable numbers at the beginning of 
the last century, but now, as far as is known, entirely extinct. 
The drawings of Savery, preserved in the Belvedere at Vienna, 
and in the Eoyal Gallery at Berlin, and some remains of a 
skeleton formerly in the collection already alluded to, of Elias 
Ashmole, consisting now but of the head and one foot, are the 
data from which the figure has been compiled. Tlie process is 
of course very different from that of preserving a real animal, 
the skeleton and skin of wliich are entire ; an artificial body has 
to be constructed and then covered, feather by feather, with 
such plumage as is most in accordance with our knowledge of 
the bird. This has been very skilfully executed, and the result, 
by the testimony of Mr. Strickland and of Mr. Gray of the 
British Museum, "represents with great accuracy the form, 
dimensions and colour of the Dodo, as far as these character- 
istics can be ascertained from the evidences which exist," whilst 
it " does great credit to Mr. Bartlett's skill and to his practical 
acquaintance with the structure of birds." 

There are other specimens exhibited by Mr. Bartlett which 
are perhaps moi-e attractive, inasmuch as they represent nature 
with a fidelity of which all can judge. The pair of Impeyan 
Pheasants, entitled " Courtship," and the sleeping Ourang-utang, 
" Kepose," are especially deserving of notice. The fleshy parts 
of the latter have been very skilfully treated ; and the dried 
and shrivelled appearance which they so often assume is entirely 

The skeleton of the Ourang-utang has been preserved and also 
the ^'iscera ; the whole forming an example of the manner in 
which rare specimens should be dealt with in order to secure 
accurate information to the naturalist, and to promote the 
advancement of science. 

Lid of Awards. 
A. D. Bartlett, Great College Street, Camden Town (Class 
xxix. 291, p. 817), prize medal for a model of the Dodo, and 
several excellent examples in the higher branches of taxidermy. 


Now it appears that the model of the Dodo was thought 
so much of by the scientific world that they allowed it to 
go down to the Crystal Palace at Sydenham, and there it 
was destroyed in the great fire of 1866 and lost for ever. 

It will be seen from the foregoing notes that at a very 
early age my father evinced a great delight in all matters 
connected with Natural History. In those early days 
of his career scientific men as well as collectors of rare 
birds, and especially of rare birds' eggs, made his house 
a resort, and the reputation of his extraordinary skill 
in the art of taxidermy became so widely spread that he 
was obliged to remove into larger premises about the 
latter part of the year 1846. It is probable that there 
are few, if any, of those early zoologists and collectors 
still living who remember that he removed his business to 
a large house in Great College Street, Camden Town. In 
his new home his circle of admirers increased, many of 
whom were the founders of the Zoological Society of 
London, and then it was that his first business connections 
with that Society commenced. 

It was in that house he worked not only for the Zoologi- 
cal Society, but for nearly all the scientific men of the age, 
and established museums. He was also honoured with 
commands from her Majesty the Queen, and H.R.H. the 
Prince Consort. He there prepared all his exhibits for 
the 1851 Exhibition, among which, by permission of her 
Majesty, several of the Queen's specimens— referred to 
above in his reminiscences — which are believed to be now 
at Windsor Castle. 

After the close of the Exhibition of 1851 the Crystal 
Palace Company was formed, and my father in his notes 
says : — " this led to my appointment as Naturalist to the 
Company in 1852." In the November, a few months after 
his taking up the post at the Palace, he was cast down 



by gastric fever, which confined him to the house for some 

With regard to work at the Palace he goes on to say: — " I 
was, as well as Sir Joseph Paxton, disappointed at the 
result of our exertions to render that noble building one 
of educational greatness ; alas ! amusements such as Punch 
and Judy, tight-rope dancing, round-abouts, etc., set all 
other considerations at naught." 

I can well understand the above remarks when I find 
that, after all the labour and money which was expended 
on the Natural History department in the south transept 
of that Palace, the large groups of animals and figures, to 
the preparation and arranging of which my father devoted 
so much time, were by degrees destroyed by the gardeners 
who had introduced live plants among them. These 
Vandals, having no other thought but the preservation of 
their plants, watered not only plants, but figures and 
stuffed animals, all at the same time. This of course 
hastened their decay. The laborious, though unsatisfactory, 
work of trying to preserve the Natural History specimens 
continued up to 1859. At the death of Mr. John Thomp- 
son, the Superintendent of the Zoological Gardens, Dr. P. 
L. Sclater, the then newly-appointed secretary, in course 
of conversation with Mr. Henry Walter of The Times, 
remarked that they (the Society) were seeking a new man 
for the post. Mr. Walter at once recommended my father, 
who was immediately communicated with, and in August 
1859 appointed Superintendent at a salary of £200 per 
annum and residence. 

Since taking up his abode in the Gardens he became a 
walking Zoological Encyclopaedia. Judging from the mass 
of correspondence, alone, which has come into my posses- 
sion, it is evident that, notwithstanding his onerous and 
responsible duties in looking after the keepers, animals, 



buildings and gardens, he found time to record his ex- 
periences for the benefit of science and for the instruction 
and amusement of the animal-loving public. 

The following is a list of A. D. Bartlett's scientific 
papers, published in the Proceedings of the Zoological Society, 
which may appear eventually in a separate form : — 


page 2 




Pink-footed Goose 


Paget's Pochard . 




Didus : Dodo bones 




Chinese Sheep 


Himalayan Eabbits 


Salmon Hatcliing 


New Emeu 


Herring Gull 


Preserving Eggs . 


Goose Head 


Nicobar Pigeon 


Hybrid Bears 


Eggs of Struthiones 




Balaeniceps . 


Pink -footed Goose 


Black-footed Rabbits 


Hybrid Ducks 


BaliBniceps . 


Breeding Felida; . 


Japanese Pig 


Chinese Crane 


Polar Bear 






Beavers . 


New Lamur . 


New Galago . 


Common Partridge 



Prong Buck . 

. page 718 


Jaw of KangaroT 

„ 28 


Breeding Birds 



Stringonyx auderssoui 

„ 324 


Eufous Tinanioii 

„ 687 



„ 688 


Walrus, food of 

„ 819 


Breeding Birds 

„ 114 



., 402 


Ringed Seal 

., 402 



„ 142 


Panda . 

„ 769 



„ 255 



, 819 


Sumatran Khinocei'os . 

., 103 


Bornean Ehinoceros . 

., 498 





„ 882 


Humboldt's Penguin . 



Darter . 

, 247 


Hybrid Bovine Animals 

„ 399 


Chimpanzee . 

„ 673 


Birds of Paradise 

,, 392 


Wolves, Jackals, Dogs and Foxes 

., 46 


Snakes . 

„ 669 


Surinam Toad 

„ 595 

The above list consists of fifty-seven papers and notes on 
mammals and birds -which contain many ^■ery valuable addi- 
tions to our scientific knowledge. 


It is well known that during my father's residence in 
the Gardens, that her Majesty the Queen frequently applied 
to him for pet birds of various kinds, especially canaries, 
piping bullfinches, etc. ; he also used to take care of them 
during her Majesty's absence from London and attend 
to them when ill at Palace and Windsor. 
In recognition of these attentions her Majesty most 
graciously sent him the following letter : — 


' ' Buckingham Palace, 

"June 4, 1877. 

"Dear Sir, — The Queen desires me to ask you to accept of 

the accompanying Watch and Chain, which her Majesty desires 

to offer as a mark of Her appreciation of your care and skill in 

the treatment of Her Birds. I have great pleasure in doing it. 

" Yours faithfully, 

" Thos. Biddulph. 
"A. D. Bartlett, Esq." 

In 1879 my father became an Associate of the Linnean 

The Zoological Society of Amsterdam celebrated its 
jubilee in 1888, and on that occasion bestowed its honorary 
diploma upon my father. 

I will conclude this short account of my father's life 
with one or two of his anecdotes. 

Edwakd Bartlett. 



A public place of resort on busy days in London is 
certain to attract and be infested with pickpockets. It 
is most unpleasant and distressing to persons who have 
expected to have a day's pleasure in visiting public exhi- 
bitions to find themselves all at once, not only penniless, 
but far from home and without friends. 

Many such cases have occurred during my holding the 
position of Superintendent of the Zoological Society's 

It appeared to me desirable as far as possible to put up 
notices cautioning visitors to beware of pickpockets, as 
the capture of these rogues after they had committed a 



robbery was always attended with much difficulty. Upon 
one occasion a woman, a well-known pickpocket, was 
captured, handed over to the police, tried, convicted and 
sentenced to eighteen months' imprisonment. 

Soon after the expiration of this term, information was 
sent to me that the lady had again entered the Gardens. 
Her dress being described to me, I sought her out, and 
meeting her in the Monkey-house I recognized her, but 
had entirely forgotten the name by which she was pre- 
viously known. As I intended that she should know that 
I knew who she was I walked quietly towards her and 
looking her full in the face, said, " Mrs. Brown, I believe ? " 
She indignantljr retorted, " No ! sir, my name is not 
Brown." I replied, " I am sorry I have made a mistake, 
as I thought I knew you.'' 

I immediately quitted the Monkey-house and went 
across the lawn to the Fish-house, where I found the 
keeper Tennant, who had been the principal witness 
against her at the trial at which she had been convicted. 
I called him on one side and told him that the woman 
pickpocket was in the Gardens, and that I had left her 
in the Monkey-house. 

" You keep a look-out, and when she leaves walk up and 
speak to her." " Oh ! " said Tennant, " what can I say to 
her ? " " Well, anything — ask her if she is Mrs. Brown." 
Tennant took the hint and I saw him meet her. He 
spoke to her and she made a rush at him, but he 
escaped from her clutches, and, to my great relief, I saw her 
make hasty tracks to the exit gate, through which she 
passed in a great hurry, after having paid a shilling with- 
out any return for her money. 

I have never heard of her reappearance in the Gardens 




A few years ago a party of Laplanders visited this 
country bringing with them a herd of reindeer, and these 
animals were for some time deposited in the Zoological 
Gardens. I had the pleasure frequently of going rotind 
with these people, who appeared to have some vague 
notion of Noah and the Ark, and who seemed to me to 
believe that the collection of animals was the same as 
that which had been landed from the Ark. Whether they 
were poking fun at me or whether they entertained the 
idea that I was the original Noah, I cannot say, but any- 
how they always asked for Mr. Noah to go round with 
them, and continued during the whole time of their visit 
to call me by that name. This reminds me of a former 
visit paid me by a party of New Zealanders, whose great 
anxiety was to see the dove that flew from the Ark, and 
they were only satisfied when I pointed out to them a 
very beautiful white dove. Very possibly on their return 
to their own country they impressed on their fellow- 
countrymen the fact that they had seen the dove that 
flew out of the Ark. 

THE sultan's visit TO THE GARDENS. 

Suddenly and unexpectedly, rushing through the rain 
and mud, arrived at the gates two outriders to announce 
the approach of the Sultan. I was in the Gardens, but 
not to be found at the moment of the Sultan's arrival. I, 
however, soon heard that he was already inside, and, 
advancing, I met the Hon. Charles Liddel, who at once 
introduced me to Mr. Moore of the Turkish Embassy and 
others, who in turn introduced me to the Sultan. The four 
principal attendants kept at a considerable distance, two 



in advance and two behind the Sultan, Mr. Moore and my- 
self being in the centre with the Sultan. As we passed the 
aviaries, pheasantries and other cages, I explained their 
contents, which the Sultan from time to time stopped to 
admire and to listen to what was said respecting them. 
His Majesty was evidently much struck by the appearance 
and performance of the Sea-hear; and the keeper, Lecomte, 
as usual, did his best to render this part of the exhibition 
as complete as possible ; the stay at this spot was of 
considerable duration, and the Sultan expressed himself 
as highly delighted. The zebras next seemed to please 
him much ; passing from this house he came upon the 
large camivora and the keeper, Cocksedge, who took con- 
siderable pains to display the lions and tigers. 


I remember the following good story of my old and 
much-esteemed friend, Mr. Adolph Franks, senior, a 
zoological merchant of Amsterdam. Franks and I used 
to do a large amount of zoological business with all the 
museums throughout Europe. He used to come to Eng- 
land to purchase large collections of dead animals, skeletons, 
birds, reptiles, fishes, etc. After transacting a large 
lot of business with Jamrach and myself one day, he pro- 
posed that we should go to the theatre in the evening ; 
well, having enjoyed the evening at the theatre and before 
parting he made us join him in a big supper in Oxford 
Street. Franks was ahvaj's mad (when he came to London) 
on lobsters for supper, so he went into the restaurant and 
looked at the lobsters, which were rather small. He then 
seized the waiter and dragged him outside, and in bad 
English mixed with Dutch told the frightened man, in an 
excited state of mind, that he wanted a lobster as big as 



the zinc one which was hanging over the door outside. 
The poor waiter was doubled up with laughter, at which 
Franks got in a rage, but he was obliged to content 
himself after all with the miniature lobsters. 


This is how it happened. Returning late one evening 
from town, after all the family had gone to bed, and find- 
ing everything quiet, I retired to my downy couch. How 
long I had been asleep I am unable to say, but I can call 
to mind a frightful noise that caused me to leave my bed 
and listen. I very distinctly heard footsteps with a rust- 
ling sound, something like moving paper, in the passage 
below. Opening my bedroom door I went to the head of 
the stairs, and asked " Who's there ? " Receiving no answer, 
while at the same time I could still hear the soft footsteps, 
I returned to my room, lighted a candle and charged my 
revolver. The thought now came. Can it be one of the 
family walking in his or her sleep ? Before, however, I had 
time to determine what to do, I heard the rustling, together 
with the footsteps, coming up-stairs. 

My determination what to do at that moment is rather 
difficult to describe, but I kept perfectly quiet and listened 
in great anxiety, as the object slowly walked up the passage 
rustling against the door and wainscot. I was now per- 
fectly certain that whatever it was I had a good chance of 
finding out. Opening the door and with light in hand I 
beheld at the end of the passage a large black vulture, 
with its enormous wings spread out, the very picture of a 
demon. How it came into the house was soon explained. 
It happened that late in the evening, after the Gardens 
were closed and the keepers had all left, a sailor brought 
the bird from on board ship squeezed into a large sack, 



and it was thought advisable to relieve the bird from this 
miserable condition. The bird was turned out of the sack 
into the closet at the foot of the stairs ; the door of the 
closet could only be securely fastened from the inside, and 
a chair or stool had been used to prevent the bird making 
its escape. This powerful creature had, however, by 
jumping about, forced open the door and turned over the 
chair ; the noise of this upset, no doubt, caused me to wake 
up and forfeit a night's rest. 


In Buckland's Curiosities of Natural History, in the 
second series, p. 48, appears an account referring to 
" Billy," the Hyaena, that was sent to his father by Dr. 
Burchell, the great African traveller. 

This animal was deposited by the Dean in the 
menagerie known as Exeter 'Change, and was afterwards 
removed with that collection to the Surrey Zoological 
Gardens, where it died on January 14, 1846. Upon its 
death I received a note from Dr. Buckland, then Dean of 
Westminster, requesting me to call on him. Early the 
following morning I proceeded to the cloisters at West- 
minster Abbey. I rang the bell at the small arched door- 
way, and the door was immediately partly opened by a 
young woman who asked me what I wanted. I told her I 
had a letter from the Dean who wished to see me, and 
that my name was Bartlett. The extraordinary grin on the 
face of the woman astonished me as she opened the door 
wide enough to. admit me, and, grinning in the most extra- 
ordinary manner, pointed to an object on the floor of the 
hall, apparently a man on his knees cleaning out what 
I afterwards understood to be a Dr. Arnit's stove. To my 



great astonishment, upon my name being announced, the 
individual rose from his dirty, warm job, and delivering 
a somewhat heated rebuke to the maidservant for her 
neglect in allowing the ashes and rubbish to collect in the 
stove and causing the smoke to nearly suffocate everybody 
in the house, at the same time handing over the brush 
and dustpan to the grinning servant, bid nie follow him. 
It was quite as much as I could do to prevent my features 
indicating the amusement the Dean's face caused me. 
Upon entering the adjoining room, however, the Dean 
caught a glimpse of his face in the looking-glass, for had 
it not been for his dress he would have had all the appear- 
ance of an ordinary chimney-sweep, and he himself could 
not help laughing and explaining to me the difficulties we 
all have with neglectful and careless servants, which had 
caused him to take the trouble to clean out the collected 
rubbish from this stove and lecture the woman with a 
caution that she must not give him any further trouble 
in this matter. He then gave me a note to Professor 
Owen, and requested me to go to the ColJegg of Surgeons 
in Lincoln's Inn Fields and carefully remove the skin of 
the hyaena and mount it for him without injuring the soft 
parts or the skeleton, which he intended to present to the 
College; With the assistance of Professor Owen and 
some of the students I carried out the Dean's instructions. 


Of all the persons I have ever met or associated with, 
I know of none who possessed a more amiable, good- 
tempered and kinder disposition than the late Frank 
Buckland. Of this I had many opportunities of judging, 
having on several occasions accompanied him on his duties 
of Inspector of Salmon Fisheries. At times when most 



people would have been provoked and enraged at meeting 
with circumstances most annoying to them, he would 
endeavour to suppress his anger and to do his utmost to 
set disagreeable matters right. I can recollect an instance 
which happened. On calling upon him one morning I 
found him somewhat upset, and, on inquiring what was 
the matter, he told me that he was angry; on making 
further inquiries as to the cause, he explained to me that 
the "Missis" would insist upon letting her pet monkey 
out of his cage, and that, in his absence, the brute had 
upset all his papers, had been tearing up his letters, had 
turned over the ink, and had done so much mischief that 
he was quite at a loss to know what to do. He appealed 
to me for advice. I felt he had placed me in some little 
difficulty, while he was looking anxiously for me to advise 
him. I suggested that lie should have a large cage in the 
middle of his room in which he could lock himself and his 
papers, and when he left he could leave his papers in 
safety, then the monkey could have the run of the house 
without giving him any annoyance. I need hardly say 
tliat I left Iiim in a much better humour than I had 
found him. 

From time to time various mishaps would take place. 
Upon one occasion a monstrous lobster was forwarded to 
his house at the time he was away inspecting salmon 
rivers. Mrs. Buckland, not wishing this fine lobster to be 
spoiled by keeping, kindly invited a few friends to supper. 
Master Lobster was duly cracked up, and so far disposed 
of On Buckland's return he inquired for the lobster, a 
letter having been forwarded to him requesting that the 
shell might be carefully prepared and saved. His dismay 
may be imagined upon hearing how it had been disposed 
of, but with a hearty laugh, he had the dust-heap searched, 
and every fragment of the lobster-shell carefully collected, 

17 c 


which he very cleverly put together, making a very fair 
specimen of this Crustacea. 

Numerous instances could be related as to how easily 
he overcame matters of this kind by the power he had of 
controlling his feelings under circumstances that would 
have produced in many persons an amount of ungovern- 
able anger. 

Buckland's house in Albany Street was noted, not only 
for its inhabitants and contents, but also for the vast 
assemblage of remarkable people who were to be met 
there from time to time. Being, myself, a frequent visitor, 
I encountered many extraordinary people — giants, dwarfs, 
and natives from all parts of the world. On a special 
occasion, I accompanied to his house a number of natives 
from New Zealand, who were much interested while 
listening to Buckland's explanations of the many wonder- 
ful things from different parts of the world in his collection, 
when suddenly these people appeared panic-stricken, and 
rushing to the window at the back of the house they leapt 
out, apparently in great fright. The cause of this stampede 
was easily explained. Buckland had opened a box con- 
taining a number of live snakes, the sight of which so 
terrified them that they endeavoured to escape from the 
house. In all probability they had never before seen a 
living snake, as there are no snakes of any kind to be 
found in New Zealand. 


I must plead guilty to the crime of having su]3plied the 
late Frank Buckland with the bear that led him into so 
many scrapes during the time he was a student at Oxford. 
At the time he first had the bear it was extremely small, 
certainly not larger than a full-grown rabbit, and was, as 



usual, a most amusing and interesting little pet, being 
made welcome by all who met with it ; but, as is custom- 
ary with all bears, as it increased in size and strength it 
became a troublesome and vexatious annoyance, and after 
many unruly antics, especially one mentioned in Buckland's 
life, Buckland's father, the Dean of Westminster, came to 
me in a rather furious state of mind, in consequence of the 
behaviour above-mentioned, and informed me that he had 
written to Frank, and that he or the bear, or both, must 
come at once to London, and that in all probability the 
bear would be sent to me immediately. This accordingly 
was done, and I placed the bear in the Gardens, but the 
changed conditions appeared to have such a depressing 
effect upon the animal that he fretted and died shortly 
after his arrival. 


I have mentioned several anecdotes about the late 
Frank Buckland, and I should now like to relate one 
concerning his wife, Mrs. Frank Buckland. Upon one 
occasion meeting my friend, Frank Buckland, at Great 
Yarmouth, our party consisting of three or four mutual 
friends, Mrs. Buckland being one of them, the conversation 
turned on the subject of the destruction of under-sized crabs 
which were exposed for sale in large quantities, and it was 
decided by Frank Buckland that he would, as Inspector, go 
round the town in the morning in order to summon the 
various dealers for exhibiting for sale the undersized crabs. 
Mrs. Buckland, having overheard what proceedings were 
about to be taken, determined, no doubt with her usual 
kindness of heart, to prevent these poor people, if possible, 
from being thus distressed ; she therefore rose early in the 
morning, went round to the market-place and cautioned 



the dealers, telling them that Frank Buckland would, in 
all probability, pay them a visit of inspection. It is need- 
less to add that when he paid his contemplated visits he 
found that all the undersized crabs had disappeared, at 
which of course he was very much pleased, and made a 
great boast as to how well the standing order had been 
obeyed ; but, however, you can well imagine the mirth of 
Frank Buckland and the rest of us when, at the breakfast- 
table, Mrs. Buckland informed us how she had risen early 
and forestalled all her husband's intentions. 


(An excellent likeness.) 




The question has often been asked, What constitutes 
the difference between wild and domestic animals ? The 
domestic animals in this country consist of the following 
species : Horses, asses, mules, different breeds of cattle, 
sheep, goats, pigs, dogs, cats, rabbits, and guinea-pigs. 
These animals are associated and under the control and 
protection of mankind, some of them living in our houses, 
our stables, and our farms. They live, as a rule, in 
harmony with each other ; they can be trusted together, 
and may be regarded as a happy family. The origin of 
most of them is so remote, that it is found impossible to 
say at what period they were domesticated, or satisfactorily 
to point out their wild progenitors. This is particularly 
the case with the horse, the sheep, the goat, and the pig. 
The varieties of all these animals are most remarkable, 
differing, as they do, in size, form, and colour. Unlike 
wild animals, these creatures vary to such an extent in 
their colour, markings, and the mixture of colour. This is 
exemplified in the most striking manner by the colour of 
horses, cattle, goats, and pigs, black, white, and reddish- 
brown appearing in various forms; sometimes the three 
colours appearing mixed upon an individual, at other 



times they are found either black, white, or reddish-brown. 
This variation of colour, in most or all of our domestic 
breeds, is a strong contrast with the uniform colours of 
most wild animals. Many years since attempts have been 
made to introduce and domesticate various species of 
wild animals. Up to the present time these attempts 
have ended in failures. Without further argument, let us 
suppose that we obtain the young of any wild species 
which are easily reared by hand, and become perfectly 
tame as pets, we find they invariably are liable, if of a 
timid nature, to become alarmed and wild ; on the other 
hand, if of a savage nature, they become dangerous and 
unmanageable. It appears impossible to so overcome their 
natural habits as to introduce them as associates of man 
with domestic animals. This is particularly noticeable in all 
the deer and antelope species, and other vegetable feeders. 
It is still more unlikely to succeed with flesh-eating 
animals. However tame they may be reared, at any 
moment their natural habit, as they attain maturity, 
would render them unsafe to be associated with man or 
other animals ; they would become the terror of all living 
creatures, the danger of their savage nature being developed 
at any moment. In the foregoing list the elephant, the 
camel, and the ferret have not been included, as they 
appear on the borders, as it were, of domestic animals in 
this country; these maybe regarded as semi-domesticated. 
It is true the ferret has been regarded for many genera- 
tions as a domestic animal, at the same time it has always 
been found unsafe to allow this blood-thirsty little beast to 
have its liberty. Numerous instances of its savage nature 
are well kno^vn ; the cry of an infant is sufficient to excite 
its thirst for blood. A very striking instance of this is well 
recorded in Bell's British Quadrupeds, page 163. 

The foregoing remarks are confined to mammals ; and a 


few words upon the subject of domestic birds may be worth 
notice. In this country we have but few species that may 
be regarded as domesticated. They consist of various 
breeds of ducks, geese, fowls, turkeys, pigeons, doves, and 
a few small birds. Swans have not been included, although 
they breed freely in captivity; nevertheless they have 
undergone no marked variety, they retain their wild dis- 
position and habits, and unless they are pinioned or their 
wings mutilated they are liable to fly from captivity ; hence 
it appears they retain sufficient of their original wild habits 
as to place them on the border or margin of domestication. 



Upon the completion of the building of the present 
Lion-house I was tormented by applications made to me 
by friends and Fellows of the Society wishing to be 
informed when the lions and tigers were to be removed 
to the new house. Numerous suggestions and ridiculous 
propositions for carrying out this interesting and danger- 
ous performance were put forward. Some people advised 
that the animals should be chloroformed, others that 
.chains and spring collars should be used, which, with a 
sufficient number of men on either side, would be the 
most simple and easy mode of transport, while one other 
suggestion was that an iron tunnel should be erected for 
them to run through. 

In order to put a stop to this annoyance I had to assure 
my numerous correspondents that nothing would be seen 
by outsiders of the removal of the animals, as it was quite 
uncertain at what hour they could be shifted and it was 
quite impossible to say when they would be. The mode 
of proceeding was, however, extremely simple. There was 
placed in front of the door of the cage of the lion or tiger 
that was about to be removed a narrow shifting or 
travelling den ; no attempt was made to force or drive 
the animal into this den, the door of which was open 
facing the open door of the old cage. The animal was 



tempted to enter the shifting den by his food being 
offered to him at the far end, but as it was uncertain how 
long it would take to induce the beast to venture into the 
temporary den, the men who were employed to carry out 
the removal were not kept waiting until the animal 
thought proper to do so, but went about their work. 
When the beast had made up his mind and walked into 
the travelling cage the keeper in attendance closed the 
door immediately behind him and the bell in the clock- 
tower was rung as the signal to the other men that the 
animal had been trapped. The men at once knew that 
they were required to convey the captured animal to his 
new home. 

Although this was a somewhat slow process the whole 
collection was removed without the slightest damage 
being done either to the animals or to the persons 
employed in the undertaking. 


The claws of all the cat species continue to grow 
during the life of the animal, and it is only by their 
continual use that they are worn down, otherwise they 
grow in the form of a circle and the joints enter the pad 
under the toe of the beast, thereby producing lameness. 
As a rule all domestic cats use their claws frequently, to 
the disfigurement of the, household furniture ; the legs of 
tables, if of soft wood, are objects often selected. In 
order to prevent lions, tigers, and other members of the 
feline class from suffering by the growth of the claws the 
dens are supplied with trunks of trees upon which they 
generally amuse themselves, and therefore keep their toe- 
nails in proper condition. 

Sometimes, however, it is found that they have neglected 



to use these trees, consequently the claws have grown 
into the pads, and unless they are cut off the animal will 
become hopelessly lame and suffer a great amount of 

It is no child's play to perform the operation of cutting 
off the talons, for, in the first place,, the creature makes 
all the resistance possible in his power, and, by reason of 
his great strength and activity, is not a little dangerous. 
The keepers endeavour to catch both front feet of the 
animal in straps that have a slip-knot ; the tighter it is 
pulled the more firmly the foot can be held, and then 
drawn forward between the bars of the cage. The operator, 
armed with a pair of sharp cutting nippers, accomplishes 
the operation and gives the relief required. In perform- 
ing this operation there is a risk of the animal, when so 
treated, biting the iron bars and to thus endanger the 
breaking of his teeth. In order to prevent this biting 
occurring one of the attendants is provided with a long 
pole or bar of wood which he thrusts in front of the 
animal's mouth, so that he may fix his teeth into the 
wood and thus prevent them being broken. If the 
same animal has been operated upon two or three 
times, although a year may have elapsed between each 
operation, I have found that the beast offers less resist- 
ance each time; I think that probably the creature 
becomes accustomed to the operation, and, moreover, I 
think the brute knows it to be done for his benefit and 

The skin of a lion or tiger is so tough that the claws 
are sometimes either broken off when fighting or com- 
pletely torn out. 




Not very long since one of the keepers came to me 
and informed me that one of the lions seemed very un- 
comfortable and was trying to get something out of his 
mouth with his paw. I went over to the Lion-house and, 
tipon examination, found that a bone had become fixed in 
the mouth of one of the animals. He was becoming very 
disagreeable, and the difficulty was, how it was to be 
extracted. I had him removed into one of the shift- 
ing dens, where he would not be far from the bars. I then 
discovered that the substance in his mouth was a large 
porous bone as large as a niiin's fist, and which formed 
the hip-joint of a horse. The lion had had his usual 
dinner of horseflesh, and had somehow or other forced one 
of his upper canine teeth into the soft spongy piece of 
bone ; on closing his mouth he had pressed the corre- 
sponding canine tooth through as well, so that the teeth 
met in the centre and had become a fixture, thus prevent- 
ing him from taking either food or water. With a great 
deal of difficulty I managed, with a pair of blacksmith's 
tongs, to get this bone out of the beast's mouth, and for- 
tunately no injury happened to the animal or to any one 
concerned in the operation. 


An announcement with the above heading is calculated 
to attract attention, for so much has been written and 
said in praise of this powerful brute, of his noble disposi- 
tion, and his respect and forbearance towards mankind, 
that many persons are deluded into a belief that a lion is 
less to be feared than any of the other large carnivora, and 



one of the most telling exhibitions that have from time to 
time appeared before the public consists of performing lions 
and their tamers. 

The end of almost the whole of the persons who have 
engaged in these dangerous exhibitions is, that they have 
been maimed for life or killed outright. 

The attempt of the lion Wallace in 1881 to kill the 
under-keeper, and his later attempt, which occurred soon 
afterwards, and in which he nearly succeeded, to kill the 
man Alicamousa, are examples of all former experiences in 
cases of this kind, and may be expected to occur again and 
again so long as this sort of exhibition is permitted to take 
place. There are several reasons for the unexpected and 
sudden display of the brutal ferocity of animals of this 
class. Some of the causes are not known or can be sus- 
pected by the persons engaged in this very hazardous 
pursuit. There are times that certain excitement renders 
animals (that at other times are tame and gentle) almost 
mad with rage. A few similar instances illustrative of this 
subject will at once become apparent to all persons who 
keep pets, or who are acquainted with animals. There are 
few persons who keep dogs that do not know at certain 
times the males surround the house in which a female of 
the species is kept, and the determined perseverance to 
remain in the neighbourhood, in spite of all the thrashing 
they may have received or be threatened with. Now, in 
case of a lion or other powerful carnivorous animal under 
the same circumstances, the creature is beyond all control. 

There is another danger that attends the performance 
that is unforeseen and rarely thought of by the public, and 
still more rarely mentioned by the friends of the man who 
has lost his life ; for it is very natural to find an ordinary 
crowd, delighted at the exhibition of courage and daring, 
wishing not only to shake hands with the lion-tamer, but 



inviting him to a friendly glass. This is one of the fatal 
mistakes of the lion king, who, being excited by his success 
and promptitude to excel, presses too strongly, and with 
foolhardy determination, to compel the animals he believes 
he has overawed to do more than usual, and the termin- 
ation of his performance is partial destruction, very often 
leading to death. It is not difficult to see and fully under- 
stand that any animal who has the power, when overflogged 
or unmercifully chastised, will oftentimes turn upon the 
tormentor ; and many instances are well known of large 
dogs, when beaten unfairly by their masters, having tui-ned 
upon them. Moreover, there are many instances recorded 
of keepers of hounds, when in a state of intoxication, 
having been attacked by the pack, the man being so 
unlike himself (when sober), he being so completely altered 
they do not recognize him evidently, and they all fall upon 
him as a stranger. 

The conclusion arrived at is simple enough. That the 
strength of a man as compared with any of the larger 
carnivora is infinitesimally small ; and if, therefore, the 
animal is angered, a hand-to-hand combat must, as it 
invariably does, mean either death or mutilation to the 


Notice has frequently been called to the fact that lions 
are so constantly bred and reared in the various travelling 
menageries under what most persons consider great 
difficulties and disadvantages. 

It must be borne in mind however that the circum- 
stances under which they exist are most favourable to 
them, as they are constantly being roused and moved 
about from place to place, sometimes with a reduced 



quantity of food, until the courage and temper of the 
animals hecome perfectly African. The natural instincts 
and power being thus developed, the animals are far more 
healthy and vigorous than the fat, well-fed, lazy, sleepy 
occupants of the dens in the London Zoological Gardens. 
The travelling showman is delighted, upon arriving at a 
quiet country town or village, to startle the inhabitants 
by the loud, angry and hungry roaring of his lions, which 
has far greater influence and service as an advertisement 
than the best band of music ; in fact, the roaring of the 
lions, when they thunder forth, is called the menagerie 
music, and the band that accompanies the caravan is 
looked upon as quite of secondary importance. The more 
aristocratic lions in the Regent's Park are too well behaved 
to disturb the peace of that highly respectable locality, 
and therefore are seldom heard to give vent to their feel- 
ings in the same manner as their plebeian brothers. 

The proprietor of a well-known travelling menagerie 
stated that, on one occasion, the largest male lion in his 
collection escaped, during the night, through a hole he 
made in the bottom of his den. He went prow^ling about 
in the dark, and first came upon a man whose duty was 
that of watchman. This individual was quietly napping 
on a bundle of hay in a comer of the booth, and was made 
conscious of the proximity of danger by the lion sniffing 
and smelling at his mouth, so fearfully close, that the 
watchman could distinctly feel the hot breath of the lion 
on his face. With great self-command and wonderful 
presence of mind he remained perfectly motionless during 
this trying moment, the fear of death so close at hand 
causing his breath almost to cease, as had he moved or 
startled he would have, in all probability, lost his life. 
He was, however, relieved at hearing his unwelcome mid- 
night visitor slowly walk away and make off in the 



darkness. An alarm was soon given, and all hands, 
keepers, helpers, grooms, and musicians, summoned to 
receive instructions from their able and energetic director. 
It was some time before his gracious majesty was dis- 
covered ; the first information received of his whereabouts 
was at break of day, when he was seen on a common near 
by, slowly following a flock of tame geese, and soon 
afterwards he appeared in full form, with head erect, look- 
ing majestically grand, and carrying in his mouth a fine 
full-grown goose, his having which was a very fortunate 
incident, as it enabled the keepers to approach him, upon 
seeing whom he squatted down determined to retain his 
prize. The keepers taking advantage of this circumstance 
secured and, by skilful management, conveyed him in 
safety to another and a stronger den, " probably a wiser 
and a sadder lion." 


During my residence in Little Russell Street, Covent 
Garden, I received a dead, full-grown tiger, from a 
menagerie. Being anxious to preserve the skeleton as 
well as the skin, I had the whole of the flesh carefully 
removed from the bones, leaving the vertebrae and ribs in 
their entirety. I then had this portion (the skeleton) of 
the tiger conveyed to the top of the house, and, in order to 
secure it, it was made fast by a cord to the chimney-stack. 
It had been there some time, during which the cord must 
have perished, because one stormy night this skeleton was 
blown from the roof into the street below. The next 
morning, to my great astonishment, I found that my 
presence was required at Bow Street Police Station, on 
the supposition that some horrid crime had been com- 

33 D 


mitted, and that the skeleton, which had fallen from the 
roof of my house into the street, was that of some human 
being and had been conveyed to the nearest police 
station. It turned out to be my tiger skeleton, but I 
found it necessary to have the bones of the head, legs 
and tail carried to the station in order to enable the 
surgeon, who had been sent for to examine the portions 
of the skeleton, to certify that they were not " human 



The serval (Felis served) is one of the forms of the 
Felidse, and appears to unite the characteristics of the 
lynx and cheetah. In the form of the limbs, and the 
colour and marking, as well as the texture of the coat, it 
closely approaches the cheetah (Felis jubata); and in shape 
of the body and shortness of its tail, together with the 
somewhat erect and rather pointed ears, it represents the 
family of the lynx. It, however, requires a very little 
consideration to discover the number of resemblances 
among this beautiful order, as, for instance, the Persian 
lynx resembles the puma of America as much in colour as 
the serval does the cheetah. Thus we have the serval with 
its spotted coat and short tail side by side with the Persian 
lynx in its plain dress. 

Throughout the whole group of the Felidse there is so 
little variance in the structure of the animals, that, 
divested of their skins, the most learned anatomist would 
be much perplexed to find characters to distinguish one 
species from another, except by the size ; and in the case 
of animals like the lion and tiger, it is only possible by a 
very slight difference in the skull to distinguish these 
two well-marked species, the skins of which present so 
great a contrast. 

The skins of the large cats, such as the leopards of the 
old world and the jaguars of America, are distinct enough 



to be easily known and recognized by persons accustomed 
to examine them, although they are spotted and coloured 
somewhat alike. In the smaller kinds, such as the serval, 
lynx, ocelots, and many of the smaller tiger cats, the skins 
are the only means of determining the species, as the 
skeletons present such a marked uniformity that it is 
impossible to distinguish one species from another, the 
size in so many instances varying greatly in the same 
species, causing much confusion and difficulty of identifi- 
cation. For instance, the leopards of India and the 
adjacent islands and the leopards of Africa are allowed by 
the best modern authorities to be only one species ; 
although they differ much in size and colour in different 
localities, and are known by various local names, such as 
cheetah, tiger, panther or leopard. On account of the 
great variation so frequently discerned in the colour or 
marking, little or no specific value is attached to it. In 
some instances, however, the size and form of the spots or 
markings on either side of the same animal differ con- 
siderably. In all the larger species the young are striped 
or spotted, the young of the lion and puma exhibiting 
these markings for several months after birth. 



The fact that all the wonderful breeds or races of dogs 
are the descendants of wolves or jackals, or a mixture of 
both, cannot offer a doubt, as I see no other way of 
accounting for their existence. The gradual and easy 
manner with which they appear to glide downward is, I 
think, sufficient reason for us to believe that in the lapse 
of time the extraordinary changes we now find may have, 
under the variable conditions of life, been brought about. 

Of the common wolf, the pups, if taken soon after birth 
and tenderly reared, are as tame and playful as puppies of 
any breed of dogs, and may, up to full growth, be trusted 
as harmless companions. After this time, however, it 
may happen (which is almost a certainty) that they forget 
the kind treatment they have received and suddenly take 
advantage of an opportunity to gain their liberty and 
pursue a life of freedom, no longer to be under the control 
of their master. There are several breeds of dogs that 
appear to differ but little from the wolf. The Esquimaux 
dog, for instance, seems to be a domesticated Arctic wolf. 
We have also dogs from the Mackenzie River, North 
America ; from Africa, China, Australia, and different parts 
of Europe, all nearly allied in form, habits, and other par- 
ticulars, until we gradually, and by many stages, descend 
into the most extraordinary varieties, viz. pugs, poodles, 
spaniels, greyhounds, terriers, mastiffs, bloodhounds, and 
others in endless mixtures, which are no doubt produced 



by selection and careful breeding. (It is said that if a 
fox-terrier were stretched out similarly to pulling out a 
piece of indiarubber, all over his body, legs, head and 
all, he could be turned into a greyhound. It is well known 
that no fox-terrier is thoroughbred without greyhound 
blood in him.) I may, however, from the opportunities I 
have had of observing so many living examples of the 
above-named animals, be able to offer a few remarks upon 
the subject. 

In the first place, I find that wolves differ greatly in 
size, colour, and markings. Wolves from the Arctic 
regions are larger, lighter in colour, and have a much 
longer and thicker coat than those inhabiting milder 
climates ; and it appears to me that many of the varieties 
from different parts of the world have been considered as 
distinct species, without sufficient characters to mark 
their distinction. With regard to the jackals, they are 
more readily distinguishable, and several well-marked 
species are known and recognized. 

I now come to the dog. The origin of the" extraor- 
dinary number of ireeds of dogs, the astonishing variety of 
size, form, colour, etc., render any attempt to account for 
their origin a task of much difficulty, but, as most wild 
dogs appear to be descendants of domestic dogs which 
have become wild, it is necessary to endeavour to account 
for the origin of the domestic race. 

There can be no doubt that the Esquimaux dogs are 
reclaimed or domesticated wolves. All wolves if taken 
young and reared by man are tame, playful, and exhibit a 
friendship for those who feed and attend to them ; the 
same may be said of all the species of jackals. This being 
so, it is highly probable that both wolves and jackals 
were constantly found in the company of man, and, by this 
association, they may have become mixed. A mixed 



breed would at once develop a new variety; a variety 
once commenced would in many generations undergo 
many changes, especially if any very well-marked variety 
should occur ; this would naturally lead to the possessors 
endeavouring to perpetuate and increase the variety, more 
especially if it were found to be of a useful quality. I 
have found no difficulty in crossing wolves or jackals with 
dogs when suitably matched, but have failed to breed 
between dogs and foxes, notwithstanding that numerous 
specimens have been from time to time brought to my 
notice of the so-called cross ; but I have never met 
with one well-authenticated instance of a hylrid clog 
and fox. 

The habits of wolves and jackals are so much alike that 
I am unable to point out any peculiarity or marked differ- 
ences. In domestic dogs many of the habits of wolves 
and jackals are frequently exhibited — the scratching up 
the ground with the front feet, and with the hind feet 
covering up the droppings, by the backward motion of the 
hind feet. The turning round two or three times before 
lying down is intended no doubt to form a hollow in the 
ground to rest upon; these peculiarities may be noticed 
in pet dogs about to rest upon the hearth-rug. The 
whining, growling, and howling of wolves, jackals, and 
dogs are so alike as to be undistinguishable, but the bark- 
ing is undoubtedly an acquired habit, and doubtless due to 
domestication. Wolves and jackals in a wild state never 
bark, neither do Esquimaux dogs nor dingos ; neverthe- 
less, if kept associated with barking dogs, they in many 
instances acquire the habit. 

A well-authenticated instance came under my observ- 
ation. A wild Antarctic wolf, after it had been in the 
Gardens a few months, heard the barking of dogs in the 
immediate neighbourhood, and the animal began to bark, 



in which it succeeded admirably; the same thing has 
happened with pure-bred Esquimaux dogs. 

This reminds me of another instance of the develop- 
ment of the voice by domestication, in the fact that no 
wild jungle fowl ever utters the fine loud crow of our 
domestic cock, the origin of which, there can be no doubt, 
was the jungle fowl of India. 

There are several species of wild dogs, such as the Cape 
hunting dog {Lycaon pictus), the Bush dog (Idicyon venati- 
eus), the Red wolf (Canis jubatus), and Canis primmvus ; 
but I do not consider any of the foregoing in any way 
connected with the breeds of our domestic races or 
varieties; at the same time, I may venture to suggest 
that animals may have existed who contributed to the 
production of some of the varieties of our domestic dogs 
and who have been absorbed or become extinct. 

The different breeds of dogs do not afford a greater 
difficulty in accounting for their existence than is offered 
by the different breeds of pigeons, or the extraordinary 
varieties of breeds of domestic poultry. 

The male wolf, when confined ivith the female who has 
young, appears to take an active share in rearing the young 
ones. It has been found that directly the young wolves 
begin to run about, the male, soon after feeding, casts up 
from his stomach a considerable portion of his half-digested 
meal, which the cubs eagerly devour. It is remarkable 
to find that, upon the male being removed from the 
female and young, the female immediately commences to 
do the same thing, namely, cast up a large portion of her 
half-digested food for the cubs. 

You may take two of the most remarkable breeds of 
domestic dogs, as unlike each other as possible, and by 
crossing them the probability is that the mongrel off- 
spring will resemble the dingo character, or what they 



call the pariah dogs, a mongrel breed in which the well- 
developed choice-bred character is wholly lost. 

There was deposited in the Gardens some time ago a 
fine, large, common European wolf, reared by hand, which 
remained perfectl}' harmless and tame when full-grown. 
It lived in the house with its master and followed him 
about the country like a dog. Upon one occasion, when 
the animal was out with its owner, it caught sight of a 
child, running, which it at once made after, and, in all 
probability, had it overtaken the child, the wolf would 
probably have seriously injured it. The owner thought 
it prudent not to run this risk again, so it was presented 
to the Society. 


A fine example of this animal arrived on the evening 
of October 26, 1868, the first of the species seen here 
alive, and certainly a rare and difficult one to obtain. It 
being late, it was determined to let him remain for the 
night in the box in which he had travelled from South 
Africa. In order that he should have something to eat, 
a fresh-killed pigeon was thrown while still warm into his 
cage. The next morning the beast was removed to the 
house inhabited by the Civet cats; this might seem a 
little out of place for an animal said to smell most 
offensively, but by some writers the Froteles is thought to 
be nearly allied to the Civets ; this therefore appeared to 
be the most suitable locality for his accommodation, near 
his relations, to blend disgusting odours with highly-prized 
perfumes. After removal from the box it was found that 
he had not eaten the pigeon, and for two or more days 
refused all the food offered him. On making inquiries of 



the person who had had charge of the animal on tlio 
voyage it was found that the beast had fed on the offal 
of sheep, etc. Fearing the animal would die, bread and 
milk was placed in his cage, and the keeper reported that 
he partook of this food. Feeling confident that his appetite 
would soon come round I left for the continent, and on 
returning ten days after the animal had been in the 
Gardens I found that he had not taken any food whatever 
during my absence. Startled at this, my first thought 
was that he was disgusted by the strong musky perfume 
of his neighbours, and, calling to mind the story of the 
nightman, who was seized with a fainting sensation when 
passing Rimmel's, I determined to have him removed at 
once to another house and take charge of him myself 
He was accordingly placed in a large den, his only com- 
panions consisting of large tortoises that were brought 
indoors for the winter. Now he had refused pigeon, 
rabbit, beef, mutton, boiled and raw and chopped in a 
sausage-machine, and bread-and-milk ; he also declined 
water, of which he lapped only a little, so a dead Proteles 
might be shortly expected, but not if I could help it. I 
had some nice fat tripe well boiled in milk ; cutting up 
the tripe quite small I placed this tempting dish within 
easy reach and left him for the night. My early morning 
call satisfied me that Mr. Proteles had not touched this 
fresh supply for his supper. Although he had not 
touched the food for his supper, I called it his breakfast, 
and, with this thought, I sprinkled him all over with the 
boiled fat tripe. This interference with the gentleman's 
coat rather ruffled him, so he began to lick off this 
offending mixture, and not disliking the taste, swallowed 
it. At night I repeated the dose as before, and in a few 
days the beast became fond of the food and fed readily. 





My instruction to the night-watchman was, " never to 
ring the house-bell during the night," because it not only 
aroused all the family, but, if it rang, they at once knew 
that something was wrong. If, however, he had occasion 
to call me, he was to throw a handful of gravel at my bed- 
room window and I would at once attend to him. 

Accordingly one dark night the gravel striking the 
glass of my window caused me to look out. " A black 
wolf is loose in the garden," said one of the keepers. " I 
will be with you directly," was my reply. I was not long 
finding sufficient clothing for the hunt. 

I found upon inquiry that the wolf had crouched in a 
corner near the Polar bear's den. By turning on the 
watchman's bull's-eye lantern we soon caught sight of 
him, his bright eyes looking with a green glare at the 
light. " Keep the light full in his face," was my order 
to the watchman, "and come slowly forward. I will 
creep sideways up to him, and, if I can get hold of him, I 
think we can manage him." While he was staring at the 
light I seized him by the neck, my two assistants at once 
came to my help, and with but little difficulty we safely 
caged him for the night. 



My first experience with elephants commenced in Exeter 
'Change, in the Strand, where, as I have before stated, I 
became acquainted with Mr. Cross, the then proprietor of 
the menagerie. I well remember the killing of the elephant 
Chunie in 1826, as I was present on that occasion. 

Being so young I was much alarmed, more on account of 
the fury of the charges he made on the front of the den 
than at the firing of the soldiers. The great fear expressed 
by all present was that he would break out, as had he 
done so the whole floor of the building would have given 
way under his weight and he would have landed in the 
Bazaar in the Strand beneath. 

In 1847 the large male elephant, Jack; died in the 
Zoological Gardens. I was sent'Jiaf to skin and prepare the 
skeleton of this huge animal. Professor Owen, Professor 
Rymer Jones and other anatomists were present on the 
occasion, taking notes and assisting in the dissection. By 
the accidental breaking of the tackle used in lifting the 
body of this ponderous brute I was nearly crushed to death, 
and Professor Owen, while endeavouring to remove the 
brain, so lacerated his hands against the ragged edge of 
the skull-bones that an alarming and dangerous illness 
was the result ; in fact, it was thought for some time that 
his life was in danger. Since this event I have had con- 
siderable experience in skinning and preparing large 
animals. The various proprietors of menageries would 



write to me informing me of the death of any of their 
large animals, most of which I purchased. I also received 
all, or nearly all, the animals that died in the Regent's Park 
and in the Surrey Zoological Gardens. I thus became 
acquainted with the proprietors of travelling menageries, 
and at the same time I obtained a knowledge of all the 
elephants in travelling menageries in England and many 
on the continent, as well as those in the Zoological Gardens 
in various parts of Europe. 

My fondness for elephants led me to study them and 
pay particular attention to their habits and treatment in 
captivitj^ I found that the males when approaching 
maturity, or when about twenty years of age, required very 
careful management, for about this period, if well fed and 
in good condition, they become restless and somewhat 
uncertain in temper, and in many instances extremely 
dangerous to be approached. This condition generally 
would last four or five weeks, and is well known to elephant- 
keepers by the term " must." I heard of the deaths of 
many persons who had been killed from time to time by 
elephants while in this state. 

The first elephant that ever came immediately under 
my charge was the celebrated " Jumbo." 

The African elephant " Jumbo '' was received in exchange 
for other animals on June 26, 1865. 

At that date he was about 4 ft. high and he was in a filthy 
and miserable condition. I handed him over to Matthew 
Scott, who I thought was the most likely man to attend 
to my instructions because he had no previous experience 
in the treatment and management of elephants. The first 
thing was to endeavour to remove the accumulated filth 
and dirt from his skin. This was a task requiring a con- 
siderable amount of labour and patience, and was not to be 
done in the space of a moment. The poor beast's feet for 



want of attention had grown out of shape, but by scraping 
and rasping, together with a supply of good and nourishing 
food, his condition rapidly improved. He soon, however, 
became very frolicsome and began to play up some very 
lively tricks, so much so that we found it necessary to put 
a stop to his gambols, and this we accomplished in a very 
speedy and effectual manner. Scott and myself, holding 
him by each ear, administered to him a good thrashing. 
He quickly recognized that he was mastered by lying 
down and uttering a cry of submission. We coaxed him 
and fed him with a few tempting morsels, and after this 
time he appeared to recognize that we were his best friends, 
and he continued on the best of terms with both of us 
until about the year before he was sold. He was at that 
time about twenty-one years old and had attained the 
enormous size of nearly 11 ft. in height. As I 'have 
before ^ mentioned, all male elephants at this age and 
in this condition become troublesome and dangerous. 
"Jumbo " was no exception to this rule. He commenced to 
destroy the doors and other parts of his house, driving his 
tusks through the iron plates, splintering the timber in 
all directions, rendering it necessary to have the house 
propped up, as it still remains, with massive timber beams. 
When in this condition and in his house, none of the 
keepers except Scott dare go near him ; but, strange to say, 
he was perfectly quiet as soon as he was allowed to be 
free in the Gardens. I was perfectly well aware that this 
restless and frantic condition could be subdued by reduc- 
ing the quantity of his food, fastening his limbs by chains, 
and an occasional flogging ; but this treatment would have 
called forth a multitude of protests from kind-hearted and 
sensitive people, and, in all probability, would have led to 
those concerned appearing before the magistrates at the 
police court charged with cruelty ; and the result might 


^^SrS*^^^'' '=' _ - >■ 


have been very unfavourable and disastrous. It is only 
those who have had experience in the management of an 
elephant who are aware that unless the person in charge of 
him is determined to be master and overpower him, that 
person will lose all control over him and will be liable at 
any moment to fall a victim to his enormous strength. It 
was during his fits of temporary insanity that " Jumbo " 
broke both his tusks by driving them through the iron- 
work of his den ; the tusks were broken off within his 
mouth, probably close to his upper jawbone. As the tusks 
of elephants continue to grow throughout the whole of 
the animal's life, " Jumbo's " tusks accordingly grew again, 
pushing forward the broken jagged ends ; but instead of 
protruding in the usual way from under the upper lip 
they grew somewhat upwards in his mouth and in the 
course of time it was observed that they were forcing their 
way through the skin not far below his eyes. The result of 
this was an abscess on each side of his face. It was evident 
to every one that the painful irritation caused the beast 
much suffering, and he fed but little and was losing flesh 
He was getting so weak that he appeared afraid to lie 
down, and had he done so it was doubtful if he would have 
had strength to get up again. Upon my going to him he 
would allow me to put my hand upon these swellings, and 
appeared to me by the motion of his trunk to indicate the 
seat or cause of his suffering. I therefore determined to 
cut through the thick skin in order to discharge the ac- 
cumulated pus and enable the tusks to grow out of this 
opening. In order to accomplish this I had a steel rod 
made about 18 in. in length, formed with a sharp 
hook at the end, the hook being flattened on the inner 
edge as sharp as a razor. With this instrument Scott, the 
keeper, and I entered the den, having previously fastened 
the doors of the house to prevent any one entering and 



disturbing our proceedings, as I was fearful that the noise 
made by the other keepers would alarm the brute or cause 
him to be restless. Standing under his lower jaw and 
passing the instrument above the swollen part, I, with a 
sharp pull, hooking fast into the skin, cut it through, caus- 
ing a most frightful discharge of very offensive matter ; 
the poor beast uttered a loud shriek and rushed from us, 
bleeding, shaking and trembling, but without exhibiting 
any anger. After a little coaxing and talking to he 
allowed us to wash out the wound by syringing it with 
water. On the following morning we determined to 
operate upon the other abscess on the opposite side. We 
had, however, some misgiving as to the result of our 
second attempt to operate upon him, but, to our intense 
surprise, the beast stood perfectly still until the sudden 
cut caused him to start and give another cry like the one 
he littered the day before. The improvement in the 
animal's condition after these two operations was most 
remarkable ; the tusks soon made their appearance growing 
through the apertures that had been cut for the discharge 
of the abscesses instead of coming out under the upper 
lip, their ordinary, or I may say their proper, place. 

But to return to " Jumbo's " early days, I may remark 
that he was very soon strong enough to carry children on 
his back, and, therefore, a new howdah was made for 
him. At that time all the cash handed to the keepers 
of the elephants by the persons who rode on them was 
the keepers' perquisites. How much they received from 
the visitors will probably never be known, but, as " Jumbo " 
became the great favourite, Scott came in for the lion's 
share. This, no doubt, was the cause of his refusing to 
have the assistance of any other keeper ; in fact, all the 
keepers had a fear of him, probably not without cause.^ 

' Since the departure of " Jumbo," by order of the Council an 



" Jumbo " had been for nearly sixteen years quiet, gentle, 
and tractable, and had been daily in the habit of carrying 
hundreds of visitors about the gardens. Finding that he, 
at the end of this period, was likely to do some fatal 
mischief I made an application to the Council to be 
supplied with a sufficiently powerful rifle in the event 
of finding it necessary to kill him. Strange to say also 
about this time I received a letter from the late Mr. 
Barnum, asking if the Society would sell the big African 
elephant, and, if so, at what price. I submitted Mr. 
Barnum 's letter to the Council, and was instructed to 
dispose of the animal for £2000. I wrote immediately to 
Mr. Barnum telling him that he could have " Jumbo " 
for £2000 "as he stands," my object being to save the 
Society the expense of packing and forwarding this huge 
animal to America. Mr. Barnum replied by telegram — 
" I accept your offer ; my agents will be with you in a few 

The following appeared in the Times, January 25, 
1882 :— 


" Barnum, the American showman, has bought for the 
sum of £2000, the large male African Elephant, which 
has for many years formed one of the principal attractions 
In the Gardens of the Zoological Society in the Regent's 

" The purchase has been made upon the understanding 
that the animal is to be removed and shipped to America 

entirely new arrangement has been adopted, by the sale of 
riding tickets at 2d each, the men taking a share. The result 
has been to produce an income to the Society of about £800 per 

49 E 


at the risk of the purchaser. To those who know the 
size, weight, and strength of this ponderoiis creature 
(certainly the largest elephant in Europe), the under- 
taking is one of serious difficulty and not unattended with 
some danger." 

When Elephant Bill (Newman), Mr. Bamum's man, 
and Mr. Bamum's agent, Mr. Davis, had, after five or six 
weeks, fruitlessly attempted to entice or force " Jumbo " 
into the travelling box, they came to me seriously about 
what was the best thing to do; at the same time Mr. 
Davis said, if the Society would undertake to safely put 
Jumbo on board ship, he was willing to pay £1000. This 
offer was declined, at the same time a promise was given 
to do the best to assist in carrying out the undertaking. 

Very considerable alterations were then proposed to be 
made in the arrangements, but when the fresh plans were 
perfected to every one's satisfaction, it was found that a 
further difficulty existed ; that difficulty was, it was 
imagined, caused by the unwillingness of Scott, the keeper, 
to exert himself in the command he had over the animal ; 
in fact, it was generally suspected that he was obstructing 
the work of removal, and that his effort to box the elephant 
was a sham. This caused me to ask Newman whether if 
I removed Scott from the elephant-house, lie would under- 
take the charge of the beast himself This he at once 
consented to do. Having arranged this matter, I pro- 
ceeded with Newman to the elephant-house, and calling 
Scott outside, told him that it was my intention to send 
him away from the Gardens for a time in order that 
Newman should get accustomed to the habits and manage- 
ment of Jumbo before he left England. At the same 
time I remarked to Scott that Mr. Barnum had made 
him a most liberal offer if he would accompany the animal 
to America, and that his place would be kept open for 



him here should he return in a specified time. Scott 
immediately begged me not to carry out my intention of 
giving him a holiday, stating that if I would only give 
him another day he would do his best to induce " Jumbo " 
to enter his box. To this I agreed, and on the following 
morning " Jumbo " was safely housed. 

" ALICE." 

The African elephant " Alice " was purchased of the late 
Mr. C. Rice (who at the time had an establishment in 
St. George's Street, E.) for the sum of £500. At that time 
she was under 4 ft. in height. She was very tractable. 
So small was she that it was suggested that she should 
be put in a cab and taken to the Gardens. Being anxious 
to remove her that same afternoon I determined to walk 
her through the streets. This I managed in spite of 
the trouble and annoyance caused by a crowd of two 
to three hundred of the London mob, composed as a 
London mob usually is of a lot of dirty, ragged, noisy boys, 
and not a few of that nomad, the London rough, the 
curse to modern travellers about town. Notwithstanding 
these difficulties I reached the Gardens just as it was 
dark. Finding my dinner awaiting me, I introduced my 
companion " Alice," who seated herself by my side at the 
table and evidently enjoyed the bread, apples, etc., with 
which I supplied her. 


One morning about nine o'clock in the month of 
August, Waterman, one of the keepers, came to me in 
breathless haste asking me to come to the elephant-house, 
at the same time saying that " Alice," the female African 



elephant, had torn off part of her trunk. I went of course 
immediately and found the end of her trunk lying in the 
middle of the den. Scott and one of the other keepers 
handed it to me at my request. It was warm and the 
nerves and muscles were still quivering and in motion ; it 
gave me a most painful shock. The poor beast appeared 
in great distress and agony, whirling and elevating her 
trunk and screaming ; she would not allow any one near 
her. I ordered the tank in the house to be filled with 
cold water, and a tarpaulin to be hung up in front of the 
den. I was sadly afraid I should have to 'destroy the 
poor creature and made the necessary preparation for an 
emergency ; however, I found, after visiting her from time 
to time, that the bleeding had stopped and that she had 
availed herself of the cold water into which to thrust the 
ragged end of the torn trunk. 

When the painful excitement had partially worn off 
I weighed and measured the portion of the tom-off 
trunk. In weight it was 2 lbs. 2 ozs., and on the longest 
side measured 12 in. ; it however shrank considerably 
when placed in a glass jar containing strong spirits of 

The constant and kind attention to the poor creature 
by the keepers convinced me that she would not die for 
want of food, as she allowed the men to put biscuits into 
her mouth, and by placing the indiarubber hose to her 
mouth she could take water. 

As the jagged end of the trunk had ceased bleeding, 
and the animal had become quiet, I had great hopes of 
saving her life. Of course it was quite impossible to say 
what would happen. It might not heal, it might ulcerate 
and decay and rot off, and then it would be necessary to 
put an end to her sufferings. 

At all events, I considered that all the symptoms were 



in favour of her recovery, and I should not for one moment 
listen to the idea of, or consent to, her destruction. 

I was much gratified to find that the wound was 
gradually healing up, and continued to do so until it was 
perfectly sound, and the animal afterwards used her trunk 
for all needful purposes nearly as well as the uninjured 


Having witnessed the manner in which Professer Owen 
had failed to remove the brain caused me to determine, 
should another opportunity occur, to try if I could succeed 
in taking out in a perfect state the brain of an elephant. 
The opportunity soon presented itself: a large elephant 
having died at the Surrey Zoological Gardens, it was 
offered to me for a very considerable sum of money. 
I bought the animal upon the condition that no one 
should be allowed to enter the house where my assist- 
ants and I were at work. I was successful in removing 
the brain in the best condition, and having deposited it 
carefully in a large pan filled with spirits I opened the 
door to a number of medical students and others who had 
been very clamorous for admission. The first thing they 
were most anxious to have was the brain for the Museum 
of the Royal College of Lincoln's Inn Fields ; they also 
eagerly seized upon the heart, kidneys, etc., in fact nearly 
the whole of the viscera, which they carried off to the 
College of Surgeons. I informed them at the time that I 
had paid a large sum for the dead elephant, and whatever 
they removed must be paid for. To this their answer was 
" there would be no objection." 

I had some little difficulty with the Secretary of the 



College of Surgeons, but I afterwards received a cheque 
for the sum of £25 for the soft parts of this elephant. 
Another rather amusing occurrence took place in regard 
to this animal. After the skin and bones had been 
removed there remained a large quantity of flesh of which 
it appeared to me somewhat difficult to dispose. At 
this moment a cat's-meat man made his appearance and 
offered to remove it. I felt a little in doubt whether he 
would carry out his offer, and to make sure I asked him 
if he would give me a sovereign for it, which he readily 
did and at once carted it away. 

Some time afterwards I met him and asked him how 
he got on with the elephant meat. His answer was, " Oh, 
pretty well at first, but there was too much of it, and I 
was obliged to salt it, and then I found I should lose my 
customers, for the old ladies told me the cats would not 
eat it. I said there was nothing wrong with it, they 
could smell it and it looked very nice ; but none of them 
offered to taste it, or they would have found out how salt 
it was, and this was no doubt the cause of the cats 
declining to eat it." 

The death of my third elephant occurred after I was 
appointed taxidermist of the Crystal Palace Company. 
This animal belonged to a travelling menagerie and died 
miles from London. With the assistance of my friend, 
the late Charles Jamrach, I secured the dead body of this 
animal, and it was conveyed to London by railway on a 
low trolley. I was much amused on going to the railway 
goods-station to find the officials very obliging and 
condescending, offering every possible assistance and 
agreeing to everything I proposed. The cause of this 
was, I found afterwards, due to these people having mis- 
taken my friend Jamrach for Prince Albert. I might say 
that it was well known to all persons acquainted with my 



German friend that, whenever he appeared in public, his 
display of jewellery was most imposing; this fact, coupled 
with his having been mistaken by the railway officials for 
Prince Albert, resulted in the kind assistance rendered by 

While I was making arrangements to convey this dead 
elephant to Norwood a gentleman residing in Camden 
Town introduced himself to me and offered to allow me 
the use of his large garden in which I could skin and 
cut up the dead elephant, upon the understanding that 
he should have the flesh as he had a large number of big 
dogs that he could feed with it. I readily accepted his 
kind offer, and accordingly the elephant on the trolley 
was drawn up to the gates at the back of his house. 
Unfortunately, however, the trolley was too wide to be 
drawn into the garden, consequently my assistants and 
I had to skin and cut up the animal in the presence of 
the crowd of two or three hundred people. The skin 
which I had taken to Sydenham I afterwards mounted, 
and it was exhibited for some years in a hunting scene 
in the Crystal Palace, but as this stuffed specimen was 
surrounded with growing plants, which were constantly 
being watered, the saturation and moisture destroyed it 
and consequently resulted in its removal from the building. 


A fine female elephant in the above-mentioned Gardens 
was for some long time suffering from lameness ; she was 
fast losing flesh, and was showing every symptom of 
gradual decay. 



The veterinary surgeon and other authorities had come 
to the conclusion that the cause was some disease in the 
feet of the animal, and various remedies had been tried 
without success. 

An Indian officer who had been accustomed to the 
management of elephants had failed, after resorting to 
various plans and remedies, to relieve or abate the increase 
of the irritating and distressing symptoms. 

The Directors of the Society wrote a request that I 
should visit their Gardens with the view of asking and 
taking my opinion and advice as to what could be done 
for the poor animal. 

I need not say I accepted the invitation, and on my 
arrival at the Gardens I was met by the President and 
other officers and conducted to the house in which the 
animal was confined. The place was so dark that I found 
it impossible to make any careful examination of the 
■ animal's feet. I therefore requested the keeper to lead 
the animal out into the open air ; the poor beast managed 
to walk with much difficulty and evidently in pain. Upon 
raising and examining the soles of the feet I at once 
plainly saw what was the cause of the mischief Turning 
to the keeper, I asked if there were any rats in the 
elephant-house. "Yes," said he, "they are swarming!" 
Addressing the Directors, I said, " Gentlemen, it is rats 
that are eating your elephant, the holes and teeth-marks 
resemble the teeth-marks made by rats in old cheese." 
After advising what was to be done to immediately stay 
further injury I advised that a new house should be 
erected. My advice was taken into consideration and 
agreed to, the elephant soon recovered her health, and, 
for all I know, the animal is alive and well in the house 
built for her safe keeping. 

The fine female Indian elephant which had for several 



years carried the children on her back about the Gardens 
was, in the month of July 1855, terrified at a thunder- 
storm. The fright brought on an attack of diarrhcea 
which terminated her existence on July 17. The animal 
was in good condition but without fat. 

Having removed the skin and the limbs from the body 
I was enabled to ascertain the entire weight of the animal 
as follows : — 


Skin 683 

Stomach and intestines 543 

Heart 25 

Kidneys 16 

Spleen . 9 

Lungs . 107 

Flesh and bones . 3642 

Blood and other fluids 200 

Tons cwts. qrs. lbs. 

5225 lbs., or 2 6 2 17 


My experience with regard to the growth of both the 
African and the Indian elephant in captivity induces me 
to believe that their fine condition and rapid growth in 
captivity is accounted for by the favourable circumstances 
under which they are constantly kept — well supplied with 
the best of food, consisting of meadow hay, straw, boiled 
rice, biscuits, mangel-wurzel, bread and green food, with 
addition of the enormous quantity of buns, biscuits, etc., 
given to them by the thousands of visitors, coupled with 
the care bestowed upon them in being provided with a bath, 
together with the constant scrubbing and cleaning of their 
skins, besides being sheltered in warm houses. Surprise 
has often been expressed by persons well acquainted with 



the Indian elephant at the rapid growth of the pair now 
in the Gardens, presented to the Society by H.E.H. the 
Prince of Wales in 1876. The male now approaches the 
size of the much-famed " Jumbo." 

When the late Sultan of Zanzibar with Sir John Kirk 
visited the Zoological Gardens "Jumbo" was as usual 
carrying a crowd of children on his howdah, and the 
animal passed our party within a few feet. The Sultan 
expressed his astonishment at an African elephant of such 
size being apparently so gentle and manageable. He had 
never before been so near a living elephant, and his inquiry 
was " why were they not utilized in his own country ? " I 
am not aware what reply he received, but I thought there 
might be a chance of his interesting himself in the subject. 
In my opinion this matter should be taken up in earnest, 
as there is no doubt, as I have shown, that the African 
elephant, although of a restless disposition, could be made 
available for use if proper means were taken to reduce him 
to servitude. This I have repeatedly advocated in various 
ways in my published accounts in several journals, and I 
hope the opportunity will not be neglected until it is too 
late ; the destruction of this grand animal is proceeding at 
a rate that will before many years have passed lead to its 
entire extermination. 

My father continues : — The elephant is not only the 
largest and strongest, but the most remarkable of terrestrial 
animals. The readiness to submit to its captors, its obedi- 
ence and willingness to perform the work assigned to it by 
its master may be attributed to its intelligence or to the 
want of intelligence, a subject frequently debated. No 
one acquainted with elephants can have any doubt but 
that the elephant possesses a vast amount of intelligence, 
at the same time it seems very extraordinary that a brute 
of its size and strength should so readily submit to the 



order and control of a creature so much his inferior in size 
and strength as a human being. 

At the present time the most cruel and -wonton destruc- 
tion of these wonderful animals is being carried out in 
Africa instead of capturing, taming, and training them to 
work as carriers, and by these means reduce the necessity 
of employing slave-labour ; ten pack elephants would carry 
merchandise equal to three hundred native carriers. If 
Africa is to become a civilized country the sooner this 
subject is taken up the better, before it is too late. It 
was said and thought that the African elephant could not 
be tamed and that the animal would not live in captivity. 
All these old notions are now looked upon as fables. 
Numbers of African elephants have of late years been 
imported into Europe, among others the celebrated 
"Jumbo," probably the largest elephant ever seen in 
Europe. His docility and good temper rendered him the 
pet of thousands, but, like all male elephants when they 
are nearly full grown, " Jumbo " at a certain season and 
for a time became troublesome and required strict and 
sometimes rather severe treatment. It is well known in 
India and wherever elephants are kept that this is neces- 
sary, but in this country anything that could be discovered 
as cruel treatment would at once be taken up by persons 
who are perfectly ignorant of the subject, and their stupid 
interference would expose the people in charge of the 
animals to be condemned for carrying out the only means 
of preventing the animal doing mischief during the time 
the restless fit lasted. 

The destruction of thousands of these valuable and 
useful animals for the ivory alone, ought to raise a strong 
protest against such cruel slaughter. There is, it is well 
known, a determination on the part of the native carriers 
to prevent the use of elephants as far as they have any 



power, fearing that their occupation of collecting ivory 
would be interfered with. 

One most important matter connected with the use of 
elephants as carriers is that their food would be found on 
the journey, for the vegetation on which they feed is 
abundant in almost every part of Africa. 


The average height of a full-grown African elephant is 
from 11 to 12 ft. The Indian elephant is about 12 in. 
less. The height of an African elephant is, as a general 
rule, that of twice round the fore-foot when placed fairly 
on the ground. 

I now give the relative proportions in weight, etc., of 
the four Indian elephants in the Gardens on May 5, 



cwt. qrs. lbs. 

Jung Pacha 

... 7 ft. 

... 2 

3 23 


... 6 ft. 10 in. 

... 2 

2 3 11 


. 6 ft. 

... 1 

3 3 26 


... 6 ft. 2 in. 

... 1 

7 1 o 

On March 18, 1881, the two following were again 
weighed : — 

Tons. cwt. qrs. lbs. 

Jung Paclia 2 17 1 23 

SuffaCulli 2 11 23 

So that in twenty-two months the increase in weight of 
these two last-mentioned amounted to 14 cwt. 1 qr. and 
8 cwt. 1 qr. 12 lbs. respectively. 

I also give the weight ''and height of an African 
elephant named "Jingo." It was purchased, and is a 
male elephant. 



Cwts. qrs. lbs. 

Purcliased July 8, 1882 ; weight 7 4 

Heiglit, 4 ft. 

October 8, 1883, height 4 ft. 11 in.; weight ... 13 2 

Increase in weight 6 1 24 

May 5, 1879. 
Tape measure once round the front foot over the toes : — 

Ft. ill. 

Jung Pacha 3 8 

SuffaCulli 3 8 

Rustum ... 2 11 

Omar 3 2 

Before " Jumbo " left the Gardens, on March 27, 1882, 
his height was 11 ft. ; after he left, and on March 13, 
1883, he had grown 7 in., and according to Mr. H. A. 
Ward's statement on March 13, 1886, he was just 12 feet. 


The African elephant differs, like many other African 
mammals, from those of Asia. Take, for instance, the 
different races of men in Africa as contrasted with the 
races of Asiatics, and you will find few of the latter bear 
comparison with your restless, wandering, determined 
Arab race ; the active and determined chimpanzee of 
Africa as compared with the mild and inoffensive ourang 
of Asia. Nevertheless, upon more mature consideration, 
I am inclined to believe that the African elephant, if 
properly managed, would become quite as valuable and 
useful as the Indian species. The great difficulty I see is 
the want of appliances at starting. In the first place, the 
African animal has far more courage, is much quicker in 
its movements, and is more determined and obstinate 
than its Asiatic relative. The two species appear to me 



to (iiffer to so great an extent that the treatment that 
succeeds so well with the Asiatic species would fail with 
the African. My experience with the last-named species 
convinces me that they require a much greater amount of 
skill and attention than the more docile Indian species. 
The male African elephant we have in the Gardens, I 
believe, is the largest living example in Europe. He is 
amazingly intelligent, good-tempered, and tractable ; at 
the same time he has given me, and every one who has 
had anything to do with him, constant and increasing 
trouble and anxiety. First his enormous strength and 
restless disposition, together with his determined desire to 
be at large, has kept us day after day constantly employed 
altering, repairing, and making his house strong enough 
to keep him in it. Now, considering the ease with which 
we can obtain assistance at any moment of masons, 
carpenters, smiths, etc., with all the required materials at 
hand, and still find it difficult and troublesome, it occurred 
to me that the natives of Africa would be a little over- 
matched. At the same time, we must consider that the 
state of the interior of Afirica is now likely to undergo a 
great change, and if the determined, bold, and reckless 
slave-hunters and slave-traders will turn their attention 
to the capture and training of the elephant in Africa, there 
can be no doubt they would succeed and render the 
country and themselves a great and everlasting good. In 
conclusion, I have no doubt whatever if the proper ap- 
pliances and means can be found to subdue the African 
elephant, he will be as tractable and useful as the Indian 

These animals may not be as docile as Asiatic, but we 
must not forget that they were regularly tamed and used 
by the ancients. That this was the kind used by the 
Carthaginians is evident from the form represented on 



the coins of Carthage. The disuse of taming them is only 
a part of the frightful decadence of North Africa since 
Carthaginian and Roman times. As for the negroes, the 
not domesticating them is, I suppose, merely because they 
— i. e. the negroes, not the poor elephants — are, and have 
long, if not always, been too great savages. But a 
systematic attempt to get it done by skilled persons 
brought from Asia would, I doubt not, be so successful 
as to confer a great blessing upon the continent. I 
remember, years ago, seeing a young elephant of this kind, 
which belonged to a travelling menagerie, led through the 
streets of Cardiff. It was advertised, and most justly, as 
a great rarity — I think as a unique specimen. I observed 
it as it went by with the greatest interest. That it was 
African and not Asiatic was evident at a glance. It seemed 
quite as quiet as any other elephant, and I fancy they 
rode it, made it perform tricks, etc., just as others are 
trained in such cases. My impression is that it went 
through the streets by itself, following its keeper, but I 
am not quite sure. 




When very young and small the rhinoceros is not 
usually bad tempered, in fact many are playful, and if a 
large ball or small cask were allowed it in its paddock 
the animal would roll and tumble it about for hours, 
pushing it with that part of the head where the horn 
would eventually be formed. Long before the beast 
becomes adult it is dangerous to enter the den or paddock 
when the animal is at liberty. It may be simply an act 
of playfulness on its part, but it would rush suddenly 
upon you and on account of its great weight and strength 
there would be much danger of being crushed. 

Some of the species, such as R. lasiotis and B. sumatrends, 
being of smaller size and less irritable, are by no means 
so dangerous as the one-horned R. unicornis of India, and 
the two-horned R. hicornis of Africa. The two latter are 
never to be depended upon. 

The savage manner in which the Indian species will 
attack the bars of its den or walls of its prison, beating 
itself furiously against any structure and, in more than 
one instance, tearing off the horn and leaving the skull 
bare, is well known. 

A large Indian rhinoceros living in the Gardens, while 
attempting some few years ago to tear down the iron fence, 
tore the horn bodily from its position on the head. 




The horn of the rhinoceros is of a very remarkable 
structure, being composed of agglutinated hair, having no 
bony core but growing from the skin, which is immensely 
thick over the nose, and when the horn was torn off it left 
the smooth bony portion of the nasal bones bare and fully 
exposed. The animal bled very much at the time, but 
the bone becoming thickly covered with the dried exuded 
blood, the place soon healed, and in the course of a few 
months a new horn commenced to be developed. 

I may mention another instance : a female rhinoceros 
in her constant endeavour to tear down the iron fence 
caused the horn to grow forward, so as to project beyond 
the nose, consequently the animal had great difficulty in 
feeding off the ground by reason of the horn coming in 
contact with it first. Consequently I determined to saw 
it off. The animal became comparatively sociable and 
friendly, allowing me to rub her eyes with my hand, and 
at the same time I practised with a walking-stick the 
process of sawing the horn. This performance I continued 
to go through on several mornings. Finding she sub- 
mitted gently to this treatment I went one morning 
prepared with a sharp saw, and, with the aid of one of 
the keepers, who smoothed her eye in order to keep it 
closed, I commenced to saw off the horn, which I very 
effectually accomplished in about ten minutes, during 
which time she remained perfectly quiet. I have kept 
this horn, and, although it has got very dry, it weighs 
11 lbs., and measures 15 in. in length. 

Upon another occasion the hairy-eared, two-horned 
rhinoceros {B. lasiotis), in consequence of constantly 
driving one of her horns against the bars of her cage, 
she caused it, in growing, to curve backwards until the 
point was in the act of forcing its v/ay through the skin, 
causing it to become ulcerated. In this case I had much 

65 F 


greater difficulty, the brute was not to be coaxed into 
any kind of submission, but exhibited the most determined 
resistance to be touched. 

I therefore arranged to make both of her front legs 
fast by ropes attached to the bars of the den. It was 
a difficult matter to commence using the saw because 
of her obstinate determination to resist, jerking from side 
to side her head which we found almost impossible to 
hold still. After a little while she became less violent 
and I commenced with the saw to cut off a portion of 
the horn that curved backwards. Before I had cut half 
way through she by a sudden jerk snapped the saw in 
two. Having two more saws at hand the second attempt, 
I thought, would be successful, but another sudden jerk 
broke the second saw. She now made such desperate 
struggles to get free, and becoming thoroughly exhausted 
remained quiet for a few seconds, thereby allowing me to 
complete the operation. 

-.My pupil, the late Charles J. Andersson of Ngami 
fame, on his return from one of his hunting expeditions, 
told me of the danger of shooting a wild African 
rhinoceros. He said this ferocious beast would without 
any apparent provocation make furious charges at trees, 
rocks, or anything movable, and he, himself, narrowly 
escaped upon more than one occasion being killed by 
this powerful beast. 

This ungovernable temper is exhibited also by the 
Indian species, which I have had the opportunity on 
several occasions of witnessing, tearing its horn and skin 
in a frightful manner. During these outbursts of temper 
it would be extremely dangerous for any one to dare 
to approach it. This furious and inexplicable behaviour 
has been recorded by many sportsmen who have ventured 
to hunt this unwieldy and powerful monster. 






Having resolved on a certain day in October 1865 to 
remove for the winter months the two young rhinoceroses 
to the house next to the Elands, I arranged the night 
before with the keepers to muster at six o'clock the 
following morning. 

Dr. Corrigan, the Director "nd President of the Dublin 
Gardens, was in London at the time, and as he had also 
received a male rhinoceros, which was brought to England 
at the same time as our pair, he was, I knew, interested 
in and would like to witness' any operations connected 
with them, in order that he might get a hint for his 
own future guidance. I therefore informed him that if 
he wished to be present at the removal I should be glad 
to see him. 

At the appointed time all was ready. One of the 
animals had a strong leather collar on, the other a 
collar made of strong, thick, soft rope, round the neck ; 
to these collars were tied two strong ropes, one on each 
side of the animal. The men were divided so as to take 
charge of the ropes attached to the collars, there being 
about twelve men to each beast, and one or two others 
to assist in leading, or attending to other matters, such 
as opening or closing gates, keeping the way clear, etc. 
One keeper was to lead off with a bundle of new hay 
on his back, in the expectation that as the brutes were 
hungry they would, perhaps, follow him at once. The 
ropes fast, the men arranged and the gates opened, the 
animals came out at a nice easy trot ; seeing the crowd 
of men they suddenly turned round and plunged about. 
This caused a great commotion, at the same time some 
of the ropes getting slack became entangled with the 



legs of the beasts. Knowing the danger of their being 
irritated and annoyed by their limbs being encumbered, 
I ordered the ropes to be let fall on the ground in order 
that they should be disengaged from their legs, then, to 
keep them quiet, I took a quartern loaf which had been 
kept in readiness, and, going between them, broke off 
pieces of bread and put in their mouths. 

Having attracted their attention by these means, they 
got steady and turned round to follow me for the bread ; 
this enabled the men to again get fairly hold of the ropes. 

What had become of my friend Dr. Corrigan and the 
keeper with the bundle of hay during this little scramble 
I never heard, but certainly they were completely out of 
sight before we started the second time. No sooner had 
we started again (towards the house they were intended 
to pass the winter in) than I found their pace increase 
rapidly from a walk to a trot, from a trot to a gallop, 
myself taking the lead ; there was no time for talking, but 
away we went full pelt. I was closely followed by my 
rough friends dragging behind them all my brave army, 
whose weight, strength, and determined efforts did not 
appear to make the least difference to the speed of these 
brutes, but on we went. Fortunately I had directed the 
gates of the yard leading to the house to be set wide open, 
and which had been attended to, as there was no time to 
knock at the door. The animals bolted in and across the 
yard into the house ; I threw the remaining portions of 
the loaf on the floor and scrambled over the rails out of 
the way of danger ; they followed close at my heels, then 
came to a sudden stop inside the house, and all was soon 
satisfactorily settled. 

After the experience of the first removal of the two 
rhinoceroses, I thought it would be quite unsafe to again 
risk a run for it in taking them back to their summer 



quarters ; moreover the animals had much increased in 
size and strength during the winter months. 

I therefore arranged to get them into a large den (one 
at a time), and draw this on a low- wheeled truck, used for 
this purpose, but the enormous weight of this den and 
the animals combined prevented this plan from being 
carried out. After we had succeeded in getting the 
beast (the male) into the den, the weight of which was 
over two tons (without the rhinoceros), I considered that 
the only way we could move it was by rollers on planks 
laid on the pathway, and so slide or roll it on. Owing to 
the slow progress we made, the day was so far advanced 
that, before the transfer to the summer quarters was 
completed, I felt convinced we should not have time to 
repeat the process with the other animal before dark. I 
was, however, in fear that the female would turn ill- 
tempered on account of her being left by herself, and I 
also had vague fears that she was able to break out of the 
house were she to attempt to do so. 

After safely depositing the male, and having the whole 
staff of keepers (thirty in number) at hand, I ordered the 
strong leather collar and an additional rope collar to be 
put on the neck of the female, and with two double ropes 
behind and one double rope in front we started. Although 
we went on tolerably steady, and got safely to the end of 
the journey, we all felt perfectly sure, from the few pranks 
played by her ladyship — she had given every one his work 
to do — that the male would be more than all concerned 
would have cared to tackle in this fashion. 

The large female Indian rhinoceros died on December 13, 
1873. She was the same animal which met with the acci- 
dent by falling through the ice on the pond in her paddock, 
and of which Mr. Buckland gave a graphic account in 
Land and Water, December 29, 1870. 



He afterwards wrote : — " This animal arrived in the 
Gardens in 1850. It was then supposed she was about one 
year old, so that would make her about twenty-four years 
old when she died, and the fact that an Indian animal 
accustomed to a hot climate should live in the Regent's 
Park such a length of time does infinite credit to the 
management. Her gigantic carcass was placed on boards 
on rollers, and it took twenty-five men to roll it to the 
dissecting-house in the Gardens. The measurements of 
the great beast were : — Total length from tip of nose to 
tip of tail, 12 ft. 4 in. ; circumference at widest part, 12 ft.; 
the weight was probably between two and three tons. 
By means of pulleys the huge and ponderous skin was 
hauled up while Mr. Gerrard separated it from the flesh. 
The skin was of great thickness, in some places from 
2 in. to 3 in. 

" This is the same rhinoceros whose horn was amputated 
by the Superintendent some time since, the weight of the 
piece weighing 11 lbs." 

Mr. Buckland wrote in Land and Water, vol. x. p. 484, 
from information I gave him, an account of the strange 
ice accident to the rhinoceros : 

" The animal had been turned out that morning as 
usual into the paddock behind the elephant-hoflse while 
the dens were being cleaned. The snow had fallen thickly 
during the night, so that the pond was not to be dis- 
tinguished from the ground. The rhinoceros not seeing 
the pond put her fore-feet on the ice, which immediately 
gave way, and in she went head over heels with a crash. 
The keepers ran for Mr. Bartlett, the resident superin- 
tendent ; when he came (in a few minutes) he found the 
poor rhinoceros was floundering about among great sheets 
of ice, under which she had probably been kept down till 
her great strength enabled her to break up the whole 



mass. Here then was a most awkward accident under 
unexpected and novel circumstances, putting Mr. Bartlett's 
readiness of action to the test. My friend, however, with 
his usual courage, quickness, and readiness of resource, 
was quite equal to the occasion. He immediately let the 
water off the pond by knocking away a large plug which 
he has thoughtfully fixed instead of a tap, which is liable 
to get out of order. In the meantime the poor rhinoceros 
was in great danger of drowning, as the pond is 9 ft. deep, 
so while the pond was running off, Mr. Bartlett, losing 
no time, sent for all the available keepers and a long and 
strong rope ; barrow-loads of gravel were at the same time 
strewed on the sloping sides of the pond, to give the ex- 
hausted animal a foothold. The rope was then tossed 
round the haunches of the rhinoceros, like the kicking- 
strap of a horse in harness, and twenty-six men, one-half 
at one end of the rope and the other half at the other, 
pulled hard on the rhinoceros, so that in her straggles to 
get up the bank she would not only be supported but 
pulled forcibly forwards. After much hauling on the part 
of the men and much plunging on the slippery bank of 
the pond, the rhinoceros was at last landed on terra firma. 
The salvors of this valuable living property had then to 
look out for themselves. Mr. Bartlett had anticipated 
this, for he had left the sliding gate of the enclosure open 
just wide enough to let out one man at a time, but not a 
rhinoceros. An absurd scene then took place, everybody 
rushed to the gate, but the first of the fugitives from the 
rhinoceros, naturally stout, and possibly stouter at Christ- 
mas time than usual, jammed fast in the open gate, so 
that the other twenty-five men were in the paddock with 
the rhinoceros. The poor frightened and half-frozen beast 
luckily behaved very well ; she did not rush after the men, 
but stood still, pricked her ears and snorted, giving the 



keepers time to get out as fast as they could and how they 
could, through the ingenious ' man-hole ' or guard in the 
railing, made in case of emergencies. Neither the 
rhinoceros nor the men received the slightest injury. 
Shortly after the accident I saw the rhinoceros munching 
her breakfast as if nothing had happened. The rhinoceros 
was the big female ; she is about 10 ft. 6 in. long and 
about 5 ft. high at the shoulder, and she weighs at a guess 
between three and four tons. The ice I found was 4 in. 

" I think the Society are much indebted to Mr. Bartlett 
for the admirable way in which he prevented what might 
have been a bad accident." 



The first specimen of this uncouth and powerful 
amphibious monster was introduced into the Gardens of 
the Zoological Society in the year 1850. The animal was a 
male, and in the year 1852 a female was received. At 
the present time one of the young bred from this pair in 
1877 is to be found in good health and fine condition 
among the Society's collection. 

There can be no doubt as to the rapid destruction of 
this animal. It is easily shot, and as it lives in or near 
water it is much sought after. The flesh is considered good 
as an article of food, the hide and tusks are of considerable 
value, and its presence in the rivers is considered undesir- 
able by boatmen and others. The influx of Europeans 
and the civilization of Africa will in a few years be the 
cause of the extermination of this leviathan species, which 
is not likely to be domesticated, or rendered serviceable 
to mankind, like the elephant. 

The first hippopotamus, a male, that arrived in England 
was presented by the Viceroy of Egypt in 1850. He was 
quite small, in fact a baby, and was received in the 
Zoological Gardens accompanied by an Arab keeper 
named Hamet, who remained in the Gardens about a 
year, at the end of which time the resident keeper took 
charge of the beast. For the first two years the animal 
was quiet and good-tempered, allowing me and others to 



ride on his back ; however, on the last occasion on which 
I entered his den it was with one of my workmen who 
acconipanied me for the purpose of assisting to take his 
measurements with a tape-measure. But on attempting 
to pass it round the animal, to take his circumference, he 
suddenly, and in a furious temper, turned upon us, and 
we had a narrow escape from his powerful jaws. My 
object in endeavouring to get his dimensions was to assist 
me in mounting the skin of the hippopotamus now in 
the Crystal Palace.^ From this time no one, except his 
keeper. Hunt, would venture inside his den. It is also 
a remarkable fact that he continued to exhibit a furious 
antipathy towards workmen. I once saw him charge at 
a workman and bite the iron bars so savagely that he 
broke cne of his enormous teeth completely off close to 
the jaw. A rather interesting and exciting adventure 
befel his keeper, Hunt, with whom he was always on the 
best of terms. One day, in very hot weather in the month 
of August, the large tank outside the hippopotamus- 
house had been cleaned out and refilled with fresh water. 
Hunt, the keeper, at the closing of the Gardens, did not, 
as he should have done, open the door of the den of the 
Hippo, but took his usual walk to a neighbouring pub to 
smoke his pipe and chat with a few friends. During 
his absence the night-watchman reported that Hunt 
had gone out forgetting to let the animal into the bath, 
and the poor beast appeared to be suffering through the 

The watchman was instructed to let Master Hippo 
into the water, which he did, and no more was thought 
about the matter. Later on Mr. Hunt came home (he 
slept in a room in Hippo's house). It was a lovely moon- 

' The specimen mentioned above is now nearly destroyed by 
wet and exposure. 



light night, and, knowing the bath was clean and fresh 
and that he had left Mr. Hippo safe in his house, he 
entered, by the gate, the outside yard, undressed and, 
taking a header into the tank, plunged under Mr. Hippo, 
who in turn plunged under Mr. Hunt. Plunging was the 
order of the day, or rather night, when one came up the 
other went down, no doubt both much excited and 
alarmed ; however, fortunately, neither was hurt. Hunt, 
being an expert swimmer, managed to scramble out, and 
picking up his clothes made the best of his way to his 
bedroom, very unwilling that it should be known that he 
had had such an exciting adventure. 

Of course it is well known that when a hippopotamus 
is resting in the water no part of him can be seen. 

One morning in the summer of 1860, as I was passing 
through the house of the hippopotamus. Hunt , the keeper, 
called my attention to the restlessness of the male Hippo. 
The brute appeared determined to remove a block of 
timber that was fitted against the wall to prevent the 
sliding of the door. I directed him to see the carpenter, 
have the fastenings well looked to, and, if it were 
possible, to add to their security and to have it done 
immediately. About an hour afterwards I was engaged 
in my ofHce replying to several letters that had arrived 
by the morning's post, when the office boy rushed into 
the office, his face strongly indicating the terror that 
was upon him ; he almost convulsively shouted, " Master, 
master, the hippopotamus is out ! " This announcement 
was quickly verified, for, upon looking out of my office, 
sure enough there was Mr. Hippo on the path opposite 
my house, nor did he appear to me to be in a very good 
temper. He was moving slowly and with cautious steps, 
his eyes protruding from their sockets, his head raised 
and his back set up. What is to be done ? thought I. I 



sent the office boy towards the elephant-house to tell the 
men to prevent any one from coming towards the beast, 
and, going round the back way, I saw the door of the 
Hippo's house wide open. While thinking how to act, I 
met Scott, the elephant-keeper, who was always an object 
of dislike to the hippopotamus, and at him the brute 
would always rush whenever it saw him. A thought 
occurred to me, and I at once decided what to do. " Scott," 
said I, " if you go round and call at him he will come after 
you, but make sure he doesn't catch you ; you must run 
into his house and up the steps on to the platform, and we 
will follow up and shut the door after he gets in." Scott 
was delighted at the idea, and, with a broad grin upon 
his face, carried out my instructions with full and complete 
success. At that time there was a flight of steps leading 
to a platform over the water-tank in the house to enable 
the keepers to escape from the animal should the brute 
turn savage.^ 


This old hippopotamus came to the Gardens in May 
1850 and died in March 1878. Two or three winters 
previous to his death " Obaysch " (from the name of the 
river in which he was captured) was observed to be in an 
unsatisfactory state of health, getting thin and emaciated. 

During the summer months, when plenty of green food 
was at hand, and the weather warm, he got into better 
condition. There was no organic disease discovered when 
the post-mortem was made, and it is pretty certain that 

' A similar account of the escape of Hippo was published 
in the Life of Frank BucUand, p. 284, by Bumpus, in which, 
however, there are some inaccuracies, especially about the bank- 
note said to have been handed to Scott. 



he died from pure old age. It is quite consistent with 
these facts to suppose that the hippopotamus does not 
live to a great age, because the young animal born in 
the Gardens attained its full size in six years, although 
"Obaysch," as compared with this youngster, had not 
attained his full growth until he was ten 3'ears old. 

"obaysch" at the dentist's. 

In 1873 I gave the late Mr. Frank Buckland the 
following particulars for his book. Curiosities of Natural 
History, of the successful attempt of extracting the tooth 
of the hippopotamus " Obaysch " living in the Gardens : — 
"You will be glad to know that I have succeeded in 
performing perhaps the largest dental operation on record. 
Our male hippopotamus 'Obaysch' has been suffering from 
a fractured tooth, and, fearing the consequences might be 
serious, I had a strong oak fence fixed between his pond 
and the iron railings, as I had determined to remove the 
tooth. This I accomplished, but not without a fearful 
struggle. I had had prepared a powerful pair of forceps 
more than 2 ft. long ; with these I grasped his fractured 
incisor, thinking that, with a firm and determined twist, 
I should gain possession of the fine piece of ivory. This, 
however, was not so easily done, for the brute, astonished 
at my impudence, rushed back, tearing the instrument 
from my hands, and, looking as wild as a hippopotamus 
can look, charged at me just as I had recovered my 
forceps. I made another attempt, and this time held 
on long enough to cause the loose tooth to shift its 
position, but was again obliged to relinquish my hold. 
I had, however, no occasion to say ' Open your mouth,' 
for this he did to the fullest extent ; therefore I had no 



difficulty in again seizing the coveted morsel, and this 
time drew it forth, with a good sharp pull and a twist, out 
from his monstrous jaws. One of the most remarkable 
circumstances appeared to me to be the enormous force 
of the air when blown from the dilated nostrils of the 
great beast whilst enraged. It came against me with 
such a force as quite surprised me. I was equally 
surprised to find that the furious charge he made against 
the iron-barred gateway was sufficient to loosen the 
brickwork by which the gate was held, for had the gate 
at that moment fallen, I should have been crushed 
beneath it." 


That it is possible to keep a hippopotamus in health 
during a long journey without the trouble and expense of 
a huge tank (to serve as a bath) has been proved in the 
instance of the young animal brought to England from 
Egypt by Mr. Consul Petherick some few years since. 
The animal on its arrival was in a very rough state, the 
skin was dry and cracked, and portions of the epidermis 
were peeling off. However, in the course of a week or 
two, having the free use of the tank in the Zoological 
Society's Gardens, the skin became soft and sound, the 
dry parts came off freely, and the skin presented the 
most healthy condition. 

The beast was sold and sent to America. I was con- 
sulted as to the best means of keeping the animal in 
good health, and also as to the least expensive mode of 

My advice was, not to have any water-tank, and, instead 
of a bath, to keep the animal moist with the aid of large 


cloths or blankets wetted and laid on the animal, water 
being poured on the same as they appeared to dry. 

My advice was accepted and acted upon, and with the 
most complete success. It has since occurred to me that 
a large tray might have been constructed for the animal 
to lie in, this tray having the edge turned up some two 
or three inches, so as to keep the water in. It could have 
been lined with an indiarubber sheet, and the beast would 
have enjoyed lying in this under a perfectly wet covering 
which would be nearly equal to a bath. 


On Thursday morning following the birth of the first 
baby, which was apparently asleep, the mother seemed 
uneasy, and as the day advanced I saw the young one 
make a fruitless attempt to rise. Carefully noticing all 
the symptoms, I concluded that it was going wrong and 
determined, if possible, to remove it from its mother — a 
task of considerable difficulty, and one not altogether free 
from danger. The keeper, Michael Prescot, was the first 
to enter the house, and having the gates which lead into 
the tank containing the water open, he expected that he 
would be able to close them and keep the mother in the 
bath until the young one had been removed. He made 
the attempt, and she rushed at him and into the water ; 
but before he could close the gates she rushed out again 
and stood before her young one, gnashing her teeth and 
threatening the keeper. 

It was certain that the keepers could not remove the 
young one without assistance, so I sent for Arthur 
Thomson, the keeper, and H. North, the helper; and 
knowing the great dislike the female hippopotamus had 



always shown towards the garden watering-engine I 
arranged for the keeper, Prescot, to wheel it into the 
house in the direction that would, if she followed it, take 
her into the tank or bath. In the event of her so doing 
Thomson was ordered to be readj^ to close the gates upon 
her, while I proposed to slip into the den and carry off 
the young one, North having received directions to unlock 
and lock the gate after me. 

The attempt was made and succeeded, for as soon as 
the female plunged into the water to attack Prescot 
and the water-engine he commenced to pump the water 
into her face and eyes. This caused her to dive, and thus 
gave due time to escape before she could see what was 
going on. 

The feat of picking up and carrying the young one was 
not quite so easily managed as I had anticipated. I was 
astonished to find that the little beast was nearly 100 
lbs. in weight, and as slippery and slimy as an eel ; added 
to this, it struggled considerably in my arms. 

Placed in a warm room, on a soft bed of hay and covered 
with a blanket, it seemed to revive. Two goats supplied 
it with plenty of warm milk, which it readily sucked from 
a large feeding-bottle in sufficient quantity, which caused 
me to think that I should be able to save its life ; but it 

I will now give a few specimens of the letters I received, 
with hints and remarks of how I should proceed in the 
rearing of the young of the hippopotami. The letters 
speak for themselves, they require no comment from me. 

No. 1. 

"SiK, — It is only by mere accident, as it is called, that I saw 
the report of the death of the little hippopotamus. 

" I beg to suggest that if the mother be still in milk — that is, 
if her milk be still not dried up — that you procure a small 



puppy dog, say a mastiflf as nearly the size and colour as her 
last little one ; that you leave it sucking unseen by her when 
she is lying down, of course ; if you can apply the little one to 
her teats, get it to suck and watch the result. 

"It may be the artificial means of restoring to her her natural 
love and natural instinct. 

" It seems worth trying ; and if she should succeed in noticing 
it, a second miglit be put to her, in case the first should die of 
tlie distemper. This hint is ofiered in the interests of the lovers 
of nature. " B. S." 

No. 2. "Nov.7,l&n. 

" Sir, — Allow me to congratulate you upon the safe arrival of 
' master or miss Hippo ' as the case may be, whose birth I have 
seen narrated in to-day's Times. I wish it long life and happiness 
on one proviso, viz. that you do not give it the name of ' Guy 
Fawkes,' thereby reminding your visitors and the public gener- 
ally of a sad event in history, which Protestants and Catholics 
alike should wish to be buried in oblivion. 

" Should you insist upon carrying out your proposition, I 
think you will rather diminish tlian augment the number of 
your visitors to those beautiful and instructive gardens, in 
which I and many of my friends have spent so many happy 
hours. I believe in making these remarks I am expressing the 
sentiments of a large proportion of the community whose 
feelings should be consulted before taking a final step. 

" A Visitor." 

No. 3. " JiMi. 11, 1872. 

"SiE, — From the Times of yesterday I see that you made an 
attempt to feed the young liippopotamus with a -feeding-bottle, 
but were not successful. 

" I venture to submit that an apparatus which has been used 
very successfully in rearing a young camel, and frequently with 
goats and lambs, might be of use to you. If you think so, I 
could place one at your service if you will apply by post to me. 

" H. S." 

No. 4. " Jan. 13, 1872. 

"Dear Sir, — I take the liberty of addressing you in con- 
nection with the loss you have just had in the death of the little 

81 G 


"I have been told that the way the mother hippopotamus 
nurtures her child during its infancy is actually in the water. 
When there with the baby she manages by some mechanical 
process to press the milk out — the milk floats on the water, and 
the young one instinctively sucks it. I cannot vouch for this 
theory as I have never seen it done, and therefore give it to you 
as it was given to me, for what it is worth. " M. W." 

Ko. 5. "Jan. 16, 1872, 

" SiK, — In the BaUy Telegraph report of yesterday, under the 
heading ' Our last Hippopotamus,' the special reporter prefaces 
his account of the letters of advice given you as to the proposed 
best methods of capturing the young calf from its powerful and 
watchful mother, with the following remark : ' Tliere is a comic 
element in most human affairs.' Certainly the plans of chloro- 
forming or of stupefying the dam with sulphur, which the advice 
given offers you, are very unique, and the wiseacres deserve a 
patent for stupidity ; but by far the most comical seems to be 
the reporter's own reraark that 'ass's milk was made use of to 
feed the young stranger with, because cow's milk was found to 
be too rich.' 

" Will you kindly through advertisement in the Telegraph or 
otherwise inform the public where this London milk is to be 
obtained. And if you would persuade the worthy dairyman to 
have the walls and hoardings of London chalked with his address, 
would he not speedily realize an ample fortune ? 

" By the way, as you are in the secret you ought to profit by 
it, if only for finding him out, and you should at once enter into 
partnership with him, and then double and treble the present 
stock of cows however large that may be ; and there cannot be 
the least doubt that you, as well as he, will soon ride in your 

" Wishing for both of you your well-deserved success. 

"A LovEE OF Good Milk." 

No. 6. "Nov. 9, 1872. 

"SlE,— At the death of the last baby hippopotamus you 
expressed a wish that some travellers would discover the way 
such animals should be treated. 

"They need not travel far to discover that all animals at 
such a time seek seclusion. 
" Had the poor hippopotamus then been left perfectly quiet, 



she would soon liave given her child proper nourishment. No 
animal would give her young 'Nature's cordial' in the excited 
state the poor creature must have been in, seeing her babe taken 
from her ; no one except her keeper should have been allowed 
to have seen her for a week or two. In compassion for the 
mother and child, this time the writer hopes they will be 
allowed retirement. "A Friend to Animals." 

The female, " Dil," presented by the Viceroy of Egypt 
in 1854, was placed with " Obaysch " in the same building.' 
The first young one was born February 21, 1871, and died 
two days after its birth. She had a second young one 
born January 6, 1872, and which died on January 10. 
The third was born on November 5, 1872, and named 
" Guy Fawkes." For some considerable time it was 
uncertain of what sex this animal was, but it turned out 
at last to be a female. She is still living, and when a few 
months over five years old was as large as her mother ; in 
fact, if it had not been for the small development of the 
tusks and a smaller head it would have been difficult to 
distinguish the mother from daughter. She eventually 
became a much larger animal than her mother. 


On a fine and mild morning at the end of one 
November I arranged to have the tank of Mrs. Hippo- 
potamus's house emptied and cleaned, and in order to 
manage this it was found necessary to let her and Miss 
Guy out into the yard. I had successfully carried out 
this operation upon three previous occasions. On the 
first occasion the mother and young one did not notice 
the large tank of water, but passed the time in the yard 
eating the food that had been placed there to amuse them 
and to keep them from the water. Upon the second 
occasion the mother was not content to remain on land, but 



becoming impatient at finding the door closed upon her, 
she plunged into the cold water and the baby followed 
her. After diving and swimming about for upwards of 
twenty minutes she came out of the water, the little one 
skipping out like a kitten. 

Upon the third occasion they both took to the water, 
as before, and Miss Guy came out after her mother as 
easily as she went in. But on this morning of which I 
am speaking, she for some reason of her own made an 
attempt to quit the tank at the corner nearest the giraffe 
fence, and, to my alarm, failed to walk out ; her increased 
weight had rendered it difficult for her to gain a foothold 
on account of the smooth and slippery state of the steps 
at this corner, at which she struggled for some little time. 

In attempting to ascend and then slipping backward 
again into the water she appeared to get somewhat 
embarrassed and frightened ; her mother fully understood 
that she was in trouble and at once entered the water, 
swimming out to her. It was exceedingly interesting to 
notice how she encouraged the baby and supported its 
head on her neck, keeping it well out of the water. After 
the mother had rested she came out of the pond and Guy 
attempted to follow her, but after another unsuccessful 
struggle, slipped back again into deep water. Matters 
now became alarming, as the poor little beast appeared 
to be getting exhausted with the exertions, still after 
another rest, as before, her mother again encouraged Guy 
to follow her. Unfortunately Guy was again at the same 
spot in the corner ; however, after a most vigorous effort, 
she succeeded in surmounting the difficulty and placing 
herself on terra firrn,a. 

At eight months old Guy Fawkes was allowed to enter 
her father's den. " Obaysch " had been a resident in the 
Gardens for twenty-three years. On the morning of the 



introduction " Obaysch " was quietly eating his breakfast of 
fresh grass when the sliding door of the female's den was 
quietly raised, and the mother and young one peered out 
with a most comical expression. On seeing the female 
the old male left off eating, and loudly trumpeted. Guy 
Fawkes cautiously went up to her father, and their noses 
all but touched, when the mother, fearing danger to the 
younger one, immediately rushed forward and challenged 
her husband. " Obaysch " retreated a little distance, while 
she pretended to be feeding, at the same time keeping her 
eyes steadfastly fixed on him. 

When these animals had become excited the strange 
phenomenon of the "blood-sweat" appeared on their 
skins. The pale chocolate colour of the skin of both 
became densely covered with globular red spots, which 
looked like dew on the leaves of the trees, only in colour 
red, and which would leave a stain upon a handkerchief. 

At last the female (" Dil," which is her name) made a 
rush at " Obaysch." They raised themselves on their hinder 
legs and, clashing their teeth together, bit and struck at 
each other in a most sa^Tige manner, Guy Fawkes keeping 
at a most respectful distance behind or at the side of her 
mother. When " Obaysch " and his wife got on to their fore- 
feet again the female, by a dexterous lunge with her head, 
pushed " Obaysch " into the pond, and after driving him up 
into a comer kept guard over him and held him a safe 
prisoner. While this state of things continued Guy Fawkes 
was safely perched on her mother's back looking impu- 
dently at her disgraced father. 

Several other engagements occurred, but in the end 
their animosity towards each other gradually cooled down, 
and in a short time their differences were settled, after 
which they became a very happy family. 



The two camels were presented to the Zoological 
Society by John St. Aubyn, Esq., on June 6, 1884. 

Having been desired to send a keeper to receive them 
and bring them to London, I, in accordance with this 
request, despatched one of the keepers to Portsmouth for 
that purpose. I was given to understand that the camels 
had been found, by a man, on the battlefields after the 
affair at El Teb, in a most pitiable condition. When this 
keeper took charge of them, the largest (the mother of the 
little one) was supported in slings, she not being able to 
stand. She was covered with sores and abscesses, having 
been wounded in several places; her bones were nearly 
through her skin, and the skin was not only destitute of 
hair, but was covered all over with filth and minute 
parasites. Notwithstanding the wretched plight of this 
poor animal, the keeper had her lifted and placed in a 
conveyance, and brought her and her poor starving calf to 
the Gardens. I was much shocked at the sight of them, 
and had not a little fear that they might introduce some 
disorder among our animals. 

To guard against this, I had them placed in an out- 
building far away from the other camels. 

Their shocking condition caused me to ask permission 
of the Society to have them destroyed, as an act of mercy, 
believing it would be charitable to put them out of their 
misery, for their recovery appeared to me to be hopeless. 

I had the mother again supported by slings in order 



that the starved calf might obtain any milk she might 
have left. 

At the end of some days which elapsed before I received 
permission to have them killed, during which time every 
care had been taken to supply the poor creatures with 
the best and most suitable food, I was delighted to find so 
marked an improvement in both of them that I deter- 
mined, if possible, to save their lives ; the abscesses were 
lanced, the sores and wounds cleansed and dressed, and the 
skins washed and attended to day and night. In the course 
of about five weeks the mother was not only able to stand, 
but to walk slowly about. I then had them photographed, 
and from that time they continued gradually to improve, 
the young one more rapidly than the mother ; this may 
naturally be attributed to its being free of abscesses and 
wounds. These painful and troublesome annoyances are 
tedious and very slowly cured. The mother, however, 
perfectly recovered her health, and so improved in con- 
dition that I had both her and the calf again photo- 
graphed. The remarkable change in their appearance 
cannot be overlooked. The mother regained her hump, 
which had altogether disappeared when I first saw her 
and her whole condition was so changed that it was with 
difficulty she could be recognized as the animal photo- 
graphed less than a year before. 

With reference to the calf, its growth was most extra- 
ordinary, encouraged by the good food and kind treatment 
of the keepers who attended to it. I may add that both 
mother and young one were, for camels, exceptionally quiet 
and good-tempered. I have not the slightest hesitation 
in saying that it is my opinion that the harsh and cruel 
treatment to which most camels are subjected, by their 
brutal drivers, renders them the troublesome and, as a 
rule, disagreeable creatures they are to manage. 


The giraffes in the Gardens of the Zoological Society 
have done well for many years, as between twenty and 
thirty young ones have been born and bred on the Society's 
premises. Although powerful animals, they still are, as 
a rule, very liable to accident and sudden death. Many 
instances to my knowledge have occurred of the animals 
in various travelling menageries dying suddenly, their 
deaths being caused in general by their excessive timidity. 

I recollect walking in a pair of soft slippers early one 
morning into the giraffe-house ; I was astonished on my 
entrance to notice a sudden alarm among the giraffes. 
Upon my attempting to move they dashed about in such 
a manner that I thought they would break their necks 
or legs. It at once occurred to me that my moving 
silently along had frightened them, and in order to put 
a stop to their fear, I called loudly to them and stamped 
my feet; in this way I left the house thankful that no 
accident of any moment had occurred. The solution to 
this terrific alarm may be that giraffes, living in a country- 
inhabited by lions, have a dread of anything that moves 
on the ground so silently as the much-feared lion. 

A fine, healthy, lively giraffe, about eighteen months 
old, born in the Gardens, was observed by the keepers to 
be uncomfortable and, apparently, straining ineffectually 
to pass something. The uneasiness of the animal con- 
tinued the whole day, and on the following morning I 



thought it advisable to try and relieve the beast by using 
a mild injection. To accomplish this, five or six of the 
keepers entered the den in order to secure the animal 
for the purpose of carrying out the operation. The 
poor thing took fright at this unusual number of in- 
truders, and rushed round the place once or twice so 
as to avoid being captured. No sooner had the men 
caught the giraffe than the poor beast trembled violently, 
drooping its head forward until it touched the. ground, 
upon which it fell as dead as a stone. 

The examination after death exhibited no sign of disease, 
and it was concluded that the animal had simply died of 

Some years since I was commissioned to purchase an 
adult female giraffe for the Sultan of Turkey. This I 
accomplished by making arrangements for one to be sent 
me by Mr. Hagenback of Hamburg. The animal was 
brought to the Gardens and remained in my possession 
for eight or ten days until it could be shipped for 

By the agreement with the Turkish authorities, the 
animal was to be paid for before it left my possession. 
Fortunately for me, I received a cheque for the cost and 
expenses of importing the animal on Saturday. The 
animal up to that time appeared in the most perfect 
health. On the next day, Sundaj^, the keeper of the 
giraffe-house came to me about twelve o'clock to say tha 
the beast was down on the ground and appeared unable 
to rise. About two p.m. the poor brute died. 

The examination of the body after death failed to give 
any indication of disease to account for its sudden death. 

One morning in the month of October, at ten o'clock, 
the birth of a male giraffe took place. The young animal 
soon after being dropped began to make efforts to gain 


its legs, wh-ich seemed almost useless ; it sprawled about 
and made many unsuccessful attempts to raise itself, 
rolling over and over and again struggling to rise. In 
about an hour afterwards, with a little assistance to steady 
it, it got fairly up. It stood about, and, stretching out its 
long neck, smelt at ever3rfching within reach ; it then 
staggered about and soon flopped down again apparently 
fatigued. After resting awhile it gathered up its legs, 
and sitting up, looked around, and in about halfran-hour 
began again to attempt to stand, getting up this time 
unaided, but still very tottery on its feet. 

The gentle and tender care exhibited by this animal 
towards its young deserves noting. Her constant watch- 
fulness and kindness are to be observed for a long period 
after the young one's birth. I have frequently seen the 
mother approach the young one while it sat upon the 
ground, and with her long legs step over it, then, gently 
raising her front foot, draw it backwards in order to cause 
the young one to rise. Having placed herself in a position 
to allow it to suck, the motion of the front foot is repeated, 
delicately touching the young one until it rises. 

In captivity this animal is generally regarded as difficult 
and always dangerous to keep. My experiences, however, 
lead me to the opposite conclusion, for since the year 
1838 or 1839 to the year 1867 it has been bred and 
successfully reared in these Gardens. It is quite true 
that it is liable to accidents; its great size and stupid 
behaviour render it necessary to be very watchful and 
careful on the part of those in charge of them in order to 
prevent accident, for if by any possibility it can find a 
chance to hurt itself it appears to take advantage of it 
immediately, many instances of this kind having occurred. 
I have related a few as a means of safeguard in the 



The discovery of the kangaroo was made by Captain 
Cook during his first voyage in New South Wales. The 
wonder and astonishment of that great traveller must 
have been great on his beholding, for the first time, the 
extraordinary movements of this, to him, new animal. 
Its size (he met ■with the Macropus giganteus), its form 
and general appearance, its mode of progression, unlike 
that of most quadrupeds, hopping or jumping more like 
a large bird than moving like a mammal, would be 
calculated to produce, for a while, upon the observer a 
strange feeling of bewilderment. Notwithstanding that 
kangaroos are now common all over Europe, in every 
menagerie, in all the zoological gardens, are figured and 
described in books and works upon Natural History, and 
alluded to and talked of everywhere, yet the same strange 
feeling of surprise and astonishment is exhibited by every 
person who for the first time sees a living kangaroo ; and 
the wonderment is greatly increased if, by chance, they 
see the head or legs of a young one protruding from the 
pouch of a female. This feeling of astonishment appears 
almost universal, much in the same way as the fear of 
snakes prevails among us, as a rule. 

The cause was jjrobably the recency of the discovery 
of kangaroos. People living in London, and who have the 
opportunity of seeing and knowing all the discoveries that 



are made, soon become acquainted with the appearance 
of, and with many particulars connected with, new or 
little-known animals that are from time to time brought 
to this country. It is not so, however, with the vast 
multitude of people who live away from cities and towns, 
who have consequently not the opportunity of their more 
fortunate brethren to increase their knowledge of Natural 
History. Again, in the teaching of the elders of the 
present generation in their infancy or childhood, their 
fathers and grandfathers — -or rather it would be better to 
say their mothers and grandmothers — had not seen or 
heard enough of the recently-discovered animals of New 
South Wales to be able to impart any information re- 
specting them to their children. It is the early teaching 
in the nursery that prepares the mind for the things that 
we see in after life, and which teaching prevents the 
sudden expression of the emotion of alarm, of fear, of 
joy, etc. 

After all, the teaching by the eye is beyond all doubt 
necessary, for however much we learn by books or words, 
it is unequal to that which we witness as a means to 
acquire knowledge. 

The habits and manners of the animal which forms the 
subject of our paper differ so vastly from those of other 
quadrupeds as to make it appear not to belong to the 
same world. Had we not already recognized America as 
the new world, Australia would have well deserved the 
appellation, on account of the almost entire newness of all 
the life-forms, not only in animals but in plants. Thus 
may be accounted for in some measure the innumerable 
instances of persons who on the first occasion of seeing, 
at the Zoological Society's Gardens, a living kangaroo, 
express and display far greater amazement than at the 
first sight of much larger animals, such as the elephant, 



rhinoceros, giraffe, etc. The newness of our acquaintance 
with the kangaroo and other marsupials of Australia 
appears to require to pass through several generations to 
find its way into the minds of Europeans generally, as 
upon a comparison of notes with our continental neighbours 
the same want of knowledge and surprise is noticeable in 
the untaught in Natural History. The excitement and 
curiosity evinced by most persons when they witness the 
young kangaroo protruding from the mother's pouch 
naturalljr leads to the question, " How it got there ? " a 
question not yet satisfactorily answered. Long have we 
been trying to unravel the mystery, and some of the 
ablest naturalists have bestowed considerable attention 
upon it, and spent much valuable time with a view to 
solve it. It is not, however, our intention upon the present 
occasion to enter into that difficulty, but simply to speak 
of the kangaroos as we find them, low in intelligence and 
apparently unable to distinguish one individual from 
another, an instance in proof of which may be worth re- 
cording, viz. that if several females live together, the 
young one on leaving the povich of its mother will take 
possession of the pouch of another female ; thus the young 
ones change about, the mothers either being unable to 
distinguish or being quite indifferent to the rearing of 
their respective offspring. An analogous state of things 
is observable in our own species, on the part of those in 
the most exalted positions in society and in the highest 
state of civilization, and also in the lowest and most 
abandoned of our race. 

There is nothing that indicates a lower condition of 
intelligence in an animal than the heedlessness or in- 
difference shown by it in regard to the welfare of its 
young. Another proof of the want of intellect or power 
of discrimination, and of the stupidity of the kangaroo, is 



the mother allowing her first young one, or any other, to 
continue to suck after she has again become a mother, 
and even the first young, after she has herself brought 
forth a young one, still continues to suck her mother, so 
that the first mother has at the same time her two off- 
springs suckling, although one is itself a parent, suckling 
her own young one. 

This degraded mammal (for so its organization leads us 
to regard it) would doubtless prove one that might be 
turned to great advantage as an article of food, the flesh 
being excellent eating, but there are difiiculties in keeping 
them ; one which presents itself is to prevent them from 
wandering over the country. Our usual fences or hedges, 
that are quite sufficient for cattle and sheep, are perfectly 
useless for large kangaroos, which, at a jump or bound, 
would clear anj^hing lower than six feet without the 
slightest trouble ; once on the hop, seven or eight miles 
would be a mere scamper for one of these long-legged 
fellows, and it would be almost as difficult to catch and 
keep as birds that fly. 

The power of leaping fences renders these animals most 
troublesome in the country they inhabit, because, if it 
suits them to visit your cultivated fields, you have no 
means of preventing their depredations. Many of the 
smaller species are now the great pest of the farmers in 
New South Wales, as the cultivation of the various kinds 
of crops prove tempting to these animals. Some of the 
species have multiplied to such an extent that the-energies 
of the inhabitants are greatly tried in endeavouring to 
keep them down. 

It becomes, however, doubtful whether they will, with 
the advancement of civilization, be able to resist the 
slaughter that is carried on against them. The larger 
species are already much on the decline, owing to the 



spread of the cultivation and occupation of the land in 

Nevertheless they are harmless and timid, unless the 
large old males become wounded, or are caught or 
interfered with ; at such times they are found formidable 
antagonists, ripping and tearing, with the feet and claws, 
men or dogs. 

One is tempted to regard the kangaroo as exemplifying 
the early transition from the bird or reptile to the more 
perfectly-developed mammal. Its immature birth, slow 
growth, and deficiency in the development of the brain ; 
want of tenderness and care for its young ; dull perception 
and entire lack of intelligence ; its bird-like hop on its 
■ hind-legs, and its ungraceful crawl on all fours, — all place 
it little above the reptiles that creep and hop over the 

Of this form how wonderful are the modifications 
adapted to different kinds of life ! We have a tree 
kangaroo (Bendrolagus imistus) ; this animal is destined 
to live in the forest, to climb from tree to tree and jump 
from branch to branch, feeding upon the leaves, flowers, 
tender branches, and shoots, and moving awkwardly on 
the ground. Have we not also one form of kangaroo 
that lives in the ground ? Gray's Jerboa kangaroo 
(Bettongia grayi) digs a burrow like a rabbit and passes 
the greater part of its time there, coming out to feed only 
at night. 



These industrious creatures have always attracted so 
much interest and attention that it is to be regretted 
that their numbers are so greatly diminishing, and at no 
distant period we fear that the species may become ex- 
tinct in the new world. Although abundant enough at 
one time, they are now nearly or entirely extinct in 
Europe ; their habits, mode of living, and constructing 
their dwellings expose them at once to the hunter, whose 
insatiable desire to obtain their valuable skins causes him 
to unnecessarily destroy a whole colony at once ; this, added 
to the increased population and advancement of civilization, 
is the cause of the gradual disappearance of these intelligent 
constructors of dams. It must be admitted that a colony 
of beavers capable of bringing down several trees, each of 
nearly 4 ft. in circumference, during a single night and 
causing them to fall across a stream, and thereby diverting 
the current of a river, might give a considerable amount 
of trouble and annoyance in a well-cultivated and much^ 
inhabited country, especially if water-mills and other 
useful inventions set up lower down the said river were 
rendered useless, and perhaps the property built on the 
right bank of the stream might some day be found on the 
left ; in such a case the poor beavers would soon be called 
upon to account for their lawless though innocent pro- 
ceedings, and no doubt, without judge or jury, would be 



found guilty, condemned, and duly executed on the spot. 
Respecting the mode of building the dams, many of the 
old stories are not to be allowed credence in Practical 
Natural History. The supposed use of the beaver's tail 
has been freely descanted upon as being the means 
used for laying the foundation of, and plastering the mud 
walls. Their tails are not employed by the beavers in the 
Zoological Gardens to perform those offices ; they, having 
been carefully watched in many of their most interesting 
movements, have been observed to use their tails only for 
swimming, diving, etc., etc., and not, like those spoken of 
in stories, for the purpose of plastering and smoothing the 
inner and outer sides of the walls of their dwellings, the 
fore-feet being found quite sufficient for those duties ; 
therefore, whatever the beavers of old may have done, the 
beavers of the present day have advanced in knowledge, 
and discontinued the use of their tails in building their 

The Marquis of Hamilton (now Duke of Abercom), who 
took such an active part in the Executive of the Fisheries 
Exhibition of 1883, before consulting me, wrote to the 
Marquis of Bute asking for a pair of beavers to exhibit 
with other animals in the Exhibition grounds. My im- 
pression, when I heard that the beavers were to be for- 
warded, was that the Marquis of Hamilton had been under 
some misapprehension, for it was not an uncommon thing 
for some people to think that beavers were fish-eating 

As the beavers were announced to be exhibited, and as 
a suitable place had been prepared for them, I thought the 
matter would pass over without comment. During the 
time the Exhibition was open I was solicited to write a 
notice of the "living animals outside the building." This 
I did, and the notice was published in Land and Water, 

97 H 


May 26, 1883. I had no difficulty in describing and 
talking of the birds and other animals exhibited until I 
came upon the beavers ; here, however, I felt somewhat 
perplexed to find any kind of cause for the introduction of 
the beavers. This, however, I got over as follows : — 

" It may be asked, however, by some one acquainted with 
the subject — What have the beavers to do with fish or 
fishing ? as they eat not fish, but are, strictly speaking, 
vegetarians, feeding upon leaves, tender branches and the 
bark of trees, grass and roots. • The answer to this inquiry- 
may be that the beavers perform, and have performed many 
very important changes in the rivers in various parts of 
the world. Their habit of gnawing down trees, which 
they cause to fall across the streams they inhabit, and, 
like skilful engineers, dam up the rivers, and thus, by 
forming lakes and diverting the overflow to parts of the 
country previously dry, both water and fish become 

The beavers have bred in the Gardens for many years, 
but I must confess to total ignorance as to the condition 
of the young at birth, nor have I been able to ascertain or 
find from any works on Natural History that have been 
within my reach a solution of the subject. 

Beavers belong to the family of Bodentia, or gnawing 
animals. They may possibly produce their young in a 
very perfect form and condition, as many of this family do. 
For instance, the coypu rat, all the cavies, and the common 
hare produce their young in the most perfect condition, 
covered with fur, eyes open, feeding and running about 
some few hours after birth ; whereas a large number of 
the same family, Bodentia, produce their young in a very 
imperfect state ; they being naked, blind, and remaining in 
the nest for from fifteen to twenty days before they are 
able to crawl about. The common rat, mouse, rabbit and 



squirrel are good examples of the latter condition at birth. 
With reference to the beavers, I have never ventured to 
disturb their nests at the time I supposed or believed they 
had young. When the young beavers appear out and 
away from the nest they are about 9 in. in length, and 
rather larger than a full-grown rat. The mother always 

appears anxious to conceal 
the young ones, and when 
first they enter the water 
she will follow the one 
venturesome enough to do 
so, taking it in her mouth 
and returning it to the nest. 

As it is repeated two or three times in the course 
of an hour I am not a little puzzled to know if it is the 
same young one on each occasion. My belief is that 
beavers produce two at a birth, but upon one occasion three 
young ones made their appearance. I cannot, however, 
positively say that they all belonged to the same mother. 
There are many people even of the present day who have 



an impression that the beaver uses its tail as a plasterer 
does his trowel in building his dam ; this idea is entirely 
erroneous, the tail being used as a rudder in swimming, 
rising, and diving in the water, but the most extraordinary 
use is the warning given to the rest of the family by the loud 
report his broad tail makes on the surface of the water, of 
a supposed danger, for however many there may be about 
upon this signal they all disappear under water. The 
sound is so remarkable, that upon a still night it could 
probably be heard half a-mile away. 

Bu'yeau NatyfB Sputy:, 
Cornell Untversttt, li'^n^^a, /v. F, 


Missing Page 


resembling that of tho well-known biiavor. His little 
blunt head and small c^'es do not glan; like the eycj.s of 
our crafty foe. 

The largest British spocics of Arvicola must not, how- 
ever, be confound (^d with its ally A. agrcstis, or field vole, 
usually named "short-tiiilcd field mouHd," the raids of 
which have, ;ii timcis, not only caused inucli annoyance 
and alarm, but have threatened famine in conseijuence of 
their prodigious numbers, which have ilestroyod, whole- 
sale, newly-sowed grain, grain in store, tn.'es and shrubs ; 
in fact, all vegetation, gn^^n or dried, vanished wherev(^r 
they made their appearance, and this extraordinary in- 
crease of numbers is not always confined to one; or two 
species ; several kinds are known whoso numbers from 
time to time alarm the inhabitants of the countries they 
visit. It may appear strange, but it is neverthitjess tiMie, 
that it is always the smallest creatures in the world that 
are most troublesome, with which it is most difficult to 
deal, and which produce the greatest amount of annoyance 
and suffering. They defy all our attempts to rid ourselves 
of theiri, and frequently drive us altogetiier out of their 
favourite localities. With all our boasted power we are 
helpless, or nearly so, if we are dealing with the lesser 
kind of mammalia in the form of rats, mice, hamst(^r, 
lemming, etc. (their countless numbers completely ovi^r- 
powering all our endeavours to destroy them), not to 
mention the insect tribe in the shape of mosquitoes, tsetse 
flies, ants, wasps, locusts, etc., to say nothing of such 
as require the microscope to prove their existence ; for 
while we can defend ourselves from and kill the larger 
animals whose existence appears in opposition to our 
welfare, we arc in far greater danger when opposed by th(j 
almost invisible or microscopic enemies that are now 
being brought to light by the investigations that have of 


Missing Page 


great genera and an endless number of species widely 
distributed in every part of the world. Most or all of 
them serve as food if not for man for other animals. No 
known rodent has been found unwholesome. Independ- 
ently of the value of the flesh as food, their skins are of 
incalculable importance in our manufactures. Many species 
multiply so rapidly that if it were not for their numerous 
enemies they would probably in a short time oveiTun the 
earth and render it barely habitable. 

These facts lead us to consider the great importance 
that should be attached to their existence, and to wonder 
what great end they tend to serve. However, a,s to most 
good things there are a few exceptions to be taken for our 
well-being, by there being too much or too many of them, 
so in this case is it exemplified in some parts of Australia 
by the introduction of rabbits in a part of the country not 
sufficiently populated to keep their numbers down. Great 
fear is entertained that they may, if not checked, cause 
the extinction of almost all other animals, not even sparing 
the sheep, by not only devouring their food but by so 
tainting the ground that the sheep and cattle will pro- 
bably be starved or driven from places that have become 
infested by rabbits. 

The common rat is as widely, or probably more widely, 
distributed than any other animal ; this is not at all to be 
wondered at when we know that the rascal is quite at 
homo on board ship, and is thus taken into distant 
countries, and is consequently found to live and thrive 
upon any soil and feed upon almost any kind of substance. 
Our common rat is certainly a fine example of an animal 
capable of acclimatization ; he makes himself at home 
anywhere and everywhere, and sorely tries the patience 
of all that have to contend against him ; the skilful and 
cunning devices invented, in every conceivable form, for 



his destruction and extermination would fill a volume, and 
yet we have to continue the war against Mr. Rat, a war 
without end. 

Many of the means adopted to reduce these pests have 
doubtless succeeded to a great extent, and a collection of 
facts upon the subject would be of considerable value, 
because the circumstances vary, and require accordingly 
a different mode of treatment, as that which answers 
perfectly in one place is inapplicable to another. 

The patience of a Chinaman would be understood if 
.seen watching like a cat over a rat's hole, his lantern set 
about a foot from the hole, and a sharp instrument like a 
fork held in his hand immediately over the spot, the light 
of the lantern being sufficient to enable the Chinaman to 
see the rat, who generally comes slowly out, smelling 
cautiously at the lantern ; the sudden dart of the fork 
do^vn\vards upon the victim seldom fails to secure to the 
Celestial his dainty relish. 

We shudder at the thought, simply because we have 
not the inclination or courage to try the flavour of a well- 
fed rat ; those who have tried squirrels know better than 
to remain hungry when a well -grilled squirrel is to be 
met with. The common guinea-pigs are kept by the 
Indians of South America as pets to be eaten when other 
food runs short. 


The growth of the teeth in most animals is a very 
interesting study. In some animals the teeth continue to 
grow during their whole life, and this state of dentition is 
universal with the numerous class of Bodentia, most of 
which live upon hard and dry food, consequently the teeth 



wear down, and unless they were reproduced and con- 
tinually growing the animals would die from starvation. 

It is not my intention to enter into the anatomical 
details of the very remarkable conditions and various forms 
of teeth structure found in the animal world, but simply 
to state facts, taking for example the teeth of the beaver. 
This rodent's food consists of the bark of trees and other 
vegetable substances, it will, however, sometimes gnaw 
bones and horns. If by accident or otherwise one of the 
four incisor teeth should be broken, the tooth on the 
opposite jaw would continue to grow, and having nothing 
to oppose its growth would become so elongated as to 
cause the animal much difficulty in obtaining food ; in fact, 
many rodents have been found dead from this cause. I 
have from time to time been compelled, in order to save 
the lives of the animals, to capture some of the beavers in 
the Gardens and cut off the elongated incisor teeth. 

It happens unfortunately that, in order to prevent 
animals of this class gnawing their way out of their 
enclosures and making their escape, I am obliged to 
employ iron, and they in attempting to bite and gnaw 
this metal break their teeth, consequently in course of 
time the opposing teeth become too long to be useful, and 
therefore it is found necessary to cut them shorter to 
make them even, so as to be used as before. This opera- 
tion is by no means an easy one. In the first place, to 
hold an animal of this strength and form is a very difficult 
matter. I have found it necessary to confine the animal 
in a strong net, two persons being required to hold it in 
order to prevent it struggling. When this preliminary 
business is arranged, the operation is gone through. The 
enamel of the front of the incisor teeth is so excessively 
hard that it requires a very sharp three-cornered steel file 
to make any impression. As soon, however, as the enamel 



is cut through, a small, fine-toothed steel saw is all that is 
necessary with which to complete the deed. 

In narrating the many difficult and, at times, dangerous 
operations that I have attempted to perform, it may be 
asked (in fact, it has been asked), " "Why have you risked 
your life, as in the case of ' Jumbo,' while yon had so manj' 
people under your command ? " My answer is very simple. 
I felt that if, I were to allow another man to perform an 
operation which might possibly be attended with any 
great risk, I should, should the result be an accident to him, 
be looked upon as having been instrumental in con- 
tributing to the mischief I must also be permitted to 
say that, when I venture on these risky undertakings, I 
allow no one to be with me except those whom I can with 
confidence trust, and whom I consider capable of perform- 
ing what is required to be done. 

Having some considerable knowledge of the structure 
of animals, I always feel that I should take the entire 
responsibility in a matter of this kind and chance success 
or failure, as the case may be. 



Dormice are plentiful in Devon, and, in fact, in most 
of the Southern counties where there are copse-woods. 
They are dormant, or asleep, from four to five months in 
the year. Their nests are like round balls formed of sedge 
grass, twigs and moss, and are about the size of an average 
lad's fist. They are attached to twigs and low bushes 
about 2 ft. from the ground. If during the cold weather 
a nest be torn open the occupant will appear as if dead, 
but if put into a warm place or held in the hands it will 
gradually awaken and become lively. 

During frost their house is entirely shut up, but if the 
weather be warm and plenty of sun, they resume active life. 
They are always great pets, but require care, as they are 
exceedingly delicate. Their feather-like tails are very 
pretty, and in many cases if held only slightly by it the 
whole skin will slip off, then the beauty of the little 
animal is spoilt ; the fur never grows again, and the loss 
of the tail generally ends in death. Dormice should be 
kept very warm during the winter to prevent them from 
becoming dormant. 



At the present time the Zoological Society of London 
has in the Gardens a very fine collection of the animals of 
the swine family. When we consider the enormous im- 
portance of this group to man in supplying articles of food, 
it must be interesting to know not only how many kinds 
of pigs exist in the world, but also from which species the 
original domestic pig was derived. At the present time 
there are exhibited in the Society's Gardens the following 
species : — 

Red River hog (Potmnochosnts penicillatus). 

The Southern River hog (P. africanus). 

The Europe wild boar [Sus scrofa). 

Indian hog {S. cristatus). 

Javan hog {S. vittahis). 

The wart hog of South-Eastern Africa (Fhacochccrus 

The collared peccary of South America (Dicotylcs 

Among this group will be observed one of considerable 
beauty, the Red River hog (Potanwcharus penicillatus). 
This very handsome animal is remarkable for its excellent 
temper; upon more than one occasion the young have 
been received in the Superintendent's residence, and have 
been reared to maturity, having the run of the house. As 
pets they are not only quiet and good-tempered, but have 



the most cleanly habits, not surpassed by those of any 
other pet. The Red Eiver hog is certainly the handsomest 
of the group ; this species is a native of Western Africa. 
The next species is the Southern River hog (Fotamochcerus 
africanus); this animal, although not equal in its appear- 
ance to its western relative, is an extremely good-looking 
animal. The contrast is very great between these and 
one of the ugliest brutes in creation, the wart hog of 
South - Eastern Africa (Phacochcerus wthiopicus), whose 
frightful and ferocious face must be seen, for description 
would fail to give any idea of its ugliness. Between these 
extremes we have a number of species varying in size and 
appearance ; probably the most marked is the common 
wild boar of Europe, differing but little from that of Asia. 
There have been also from time to time exhibited in the 
Gardens, Timorese swine {Sks iimorensis) from Timor, 
Andaman swine {S. andamanensis) from the Andaman 
Isles, Papuan pigs {S. papuensis), Formosan swine (S. 
taivanus) from Formosa, white-whiskered swine {S. leu- 
comyslax) from Japan, pigmy hog {Porcula salvanid) from 
the Western Dooars of Bhotan, the Babirussa (Babirussa 
alfurus) from Celebes, .(Elian's wart hog [Phacochcerus 
a.fricinus) from Africa, and the white-lipped peccary 
(Dicotyles labiatus) from South America. 

It will be seen by the foregoing that a large portion of 
the world is inhabited by species of this family. 

The origin of domestic pigs is, like the origin of most 
of our domestic animals, so obscure that it is unsafe to 
attempt to speculate on the subject. 

In India both Brahmin and Mussulman reject the flesh 
of the wild boar as food. Detestation of the hog is a feel- 
ing entertained from remote antiquity. It was classed by 
the Jews amongst the vilest animals ; and in Egypt the 
swineherd was numbered among the profane, and forbid- 



den to enter the temples of the gods. Among the ancient 
Greeks and Romans, although the office of swineherd ap- 
pears to be held in contempt, the flesh of the hog was in 
high estimation. The Chinese have no prejudice against 
the hog ; on the contrary, they rear large numbers of these 
animals for the sake of their flesh. The extraordinary 
dispersion of these animals over the world is most wonder- 
ful. On the discovery of the South Sea Islands by 
Europeans they were found to be well stocked with black- 
legged pigs. The introduction of the small Chinese breed 
is one great source of improvement. The distribution in 
so many parts of the world of this family renders it highly 
probable that the domestic breeds have been derived by 
the admixture of one or more species. The old supersti- 
tion, now so perfectly disposed of, that hybrids, the pro- 
duct of two species, were barren or infertile, can no 
longer be maintained. We thus arrive at the conclusion 
that the origin of the domestic pig is beyond our power of 


This remarkable animal differs so much from all the 
varieties of domestic pigs, that I am inclined to believe its 
origin must have been from some species distinct from our 
common stock. 

The singular form of the head and face (see woodcut), 
together with the enormous development of skin, and the 
regular arrangement of the wrinkles, the large and pendu- 
lous ears, the drooping muzzle, together with its intelligent 
eye, give this animal a dog-like appearance ; in fact, the 
frequency of the remark made by persons seeing these 
animals for the first time confirms this opinion. 

Apart, however, from this, the whole structure of this 



animal is well worthy of consideration : the sides of the 
rump, and also from the top of the shoulders downwards, 
are thick folds of skin, which are much harder on those 
parts than elsewhere, and hang about in the same position 

and manner as the plates on the same parts of the Indian 

Having placed with the male of this animal two or 
three young sows of the Berkshire breed, I have succeeded 
in obtaining a mixed race. These half-bred pigs very 
closely resemble the male, being black with white feet, 
and exhibit the -ivrinkles on the face, but in a less 



In what way our domestic breed of pigs has been pro- 
duced it is difficult to imagine. It is, however, Very 
remarkable that in the wild boar of Europe, Africa, and 
Asia, the young are always striped at birth, and in no 
instance is this marked character found in any of our 
domestic breeds ; but the colour and markings that appear 
at birth continue during life unaltered. Not so with 
the wild species, whose young, although striped at first, 
gradually lose these markings as they grow to maturity. 


The most difficult question to answer with reference to 
the subject of swine would be, " What is the origin of the 
domestic pig ? " The early writers in Europe considered 
the common wild boar as the origin of the domestic race of 
pigs. It is very easy to understand that the pigs that were 
turned out and allowed to feed on uncultivated tracts and 
in forests did, from mixing and breeding with the wild 
race, assume so much of the character and form of those 
animals that many breeds could hardly be distinguished 
from them ; for although the domestic pigs of some 
countries exhibit many marked differences, there is not the 
slightest doubt respecting the fact, which has been well 
authenticated, that the wild boar will cross with any of the 
domestic stock and produce fertile offspring. Now this 
fact is generally considered to prove that the two are only 
varieties of the same species. This view of the case 
appears to be a very questionable one, as many arguments 
can be advanced in opposition to that assumption, without 
consideration to a full knowledge of known facts that 
strongly prevail against such conclusions. M. Frederic 
Cuvier was of opinion that the Chinese pigs were derived 

113 I 


from a wild species distinct from the common wild boar of 

Taking simply the outward form of the wild boar, its 
elevated shoulders, and depressed hind limbs, the body and 
limbs thickly and entirely clothed with the strong harsh 
covering of bristles and woolly hair, it is distinguishable at 
once from that of the really tame or domestic breed when 
unmixed with the wild race. Another most important 
character of great value to the zoologist is the condition of 
the young at birth. All the pure wild boars produce 
striped young ones. No pure domestic race or breed of 
pigs known to the writer produce their young so marked ; 
when, however, a cross can be traced with the wild boar, 
the striped young are the result, and this may continue for 
many generations afterwards. It will be fair, therefore, to 
consider whenever a breed of pigs exhibit the striped 
young, that it is due to a mixture of the wild and 
domestic races however remote the period may have been. 
That the most perfectly domestic race of pigs is obtained 
from the Chinese, in whose country no wild boar of the 
European type is to be found, there cannot be a doubt ; and 
seeing also that whatever the colour of the domestic pigs, 
whether black, white, or red, or all the three colours, in no 
instance are the young striped like our wild species, strongly 
proves that they are derived from some original breed other 
than the true wild boar race. 

It is therefore with much pleasure that we see imported 
from China pigs said to be perfectly wild in that country. 
Long since some interesting pigs were sent to England by 
Mr. Swinhoe, who obtained them from the savages of 
Formosa. They were of uniform red in colour, and the 
young were also uniformly coloured at birth. 

These Chinese pigs are black, and have but little hair, 
their skins remarkably fine ; the fineness of the skin and 



smoothness of the hair would naturally lead us to regard 
them as belonging to a cultivated and carefully domestic- 
ated animal. But other members of the pig family which 
are freely admitted to be uncultivated are quite as remark- 
able for the fineness and shortness of their coats and 
smoothness of skin, for instance, the West African river 
hog {Potamochcerus penicillatus). No one will say that this 
animal's coat has been improved by cultivation and care, 
nor has the influence of the cold in our climate at all 
altered or increased its thickness, although this latter 
change might have been reasonably expected, seeing that 
the tiger when brought to Europe always wears a thicker 
coat in winter than ever he obtains in India. 

Notwithstanding that domestic pigs have been liberated 
and bred wild in New Zealand and other places, and that 
they have assumed many of the distinctive habits and 
rough appearance of wild animals, yet they have not 
returned to the striped young, and the uniform colour of 
the wild boar — but are mostly black with white markings, 
a circumstance quite unknown among the true wild boars. 


Many years ago I gave the late Mr. Buckland some 
notes on the Red River Hog, and which have since ap- 
peared in the Life of Franh Bucldand, by his brother-in- 
law, G. Bompas Eyre. 

" During the winter of 1875 I received from Mr. Cross, 
of Liverpool, a small box about 6 in. square ; upon 
opening the box a wee striped little pig, little bigger than 
a rat, put up his little snout and gave a small squeak. 
With the winter advancing, and knowing from his form of 
ears that his native home was in West Africa, I took him 
out and gave him a good feed of warm milk, boiled rice 



and sugar, wrapped him up in flannel, and sent him back 
to Liverpool, with a note to say I could not purchase him, 
as none of the keepers would be troubled with such a 
baby, and I felt sure the poor little fellow would die if 
placed in the collection. 

" A day or two afterwards I was surprised to receive the 
same small box, and, more so, to find the unfortunate little 


pig inside it, and a note from Cross to say the animal was 
no use to him — he could not be bothered with it, — and as 
I declined to purchase it for the Society he begged me to 
accept it, and do what I pleased with it. 

" I felt hurt to find this poor little fellow thus an outcast 
and apparently friendless. 

" I held him in my hands and took him at once into my 



kitchen. Calling the maid, I asked her if she would take 
charge of this little outcast, telling her, at the same time, 
if she treated him kindly and kept him alive for one month 
I would give her a sovereign. 

"The girl, pleased at the offer, took poor 'Dick,' for 
that was at once his adopted name, and placed him in a 
basket with a warm blanket near the fire. All went well 
with ' Dick ' from this moment. Warm food and dainty 
morsels were ' Dick's ' frequent allowance. 

" He was soon allowed to walk about the house, and, un- 
like most other swine, was the cleanest of animals. , Few 
dogs or cats could equal him in cleanliness in the house, 
and thus ' Dick ' became a universal favourite ; he, after a 
while, made his appearance regularly in the dining-room 
at dinner-time and had a plate to himself before the fire. 
He was the most good-tempered and well-behaved 
creature that can be imagined. His playfulness would 
sometimes frighten strangers, and as he increased rapidly 
in size he found it difiicult to run under the chairs, and 
these he now and then turned over in his endeavour to 
rub his back or sides against them. In the early morning, 
before the Gardens were open to the public, ' Dick ' would 
follow me on my rounds like a pet dog, stopping oc- 
casionally to grub up with his snout a few earthworms, of 
which he was very fond, and while so engaged he would 
lose sight of me, but the moment he did so he would rush 
off like a mad fellow until he overtook me ; he always 
seemed to be in fear of being left behind. 

" He was very fond of being played with, and a birch- 
broom afforded him great sport. When held to him he 
would charge at it with his tusks, small as they were at 
the time, and spin round in a most extraordinary way, 
dashing off to some distance, then returning to the 



" He was never tired of this sham fighting, at which he 
never got out of temper, for, as soon as it was over, he would 
come into the house as pleased as any puppy after the 
fun. ' Dick,' however, soon became too big for the chairs 
and tables, and as they were sometimes very much in his 
way, he turned them over, not knowing, of course, that 
anything of value was damaged by his so doing ; in fact, 
it began to appear that ' Dick ' had a notion that whatever 
was on the table was intended for him, and that the 
proper way to get it was to turn the table over. It was 
therefore decided, on July 25, 1877, that the time had 
arrived when ' Dick ' should leave the house, and he has 
since formed part of the collection of the menagerie." 


Having to shift a fine large wild boar, on account of its 
having a kind of mange on its skin, six or eight of the 
keepers were required to fix some partitions on each 
side of the den so as to make a passage for the brute to 
pass through to the other den intended for his reception. 
As it often occurs in matters of this kind, the arrangements 
were not agreeable to our bristly acquaintance, who in the 
most unceremonious manner made a sharp rush between 
the legs of some of the attendants, and, having cleared 
the way out, made off, for certainly the "whole hog" 
was soon out of sight. A hot chase commenced, and we 
were not long in tracing him as he dashed through the 
thicket (as sportsmen say), when he took to the reservoir 
at the upper end of the Gardens, swam across and bolted 
back in the most determined manner, evidently fixed on 
saving his bacon. 

By this time lots of fellows were in pursuit, some with 



nets, some with catching-bags on long poles, some with 
cords, others with forks, etc. By this time he was warming 
up, and at each attempt to stop his progress he made a 
charge at the individual who came the nearest. Finding 
it almost impossible to capture the beast without con- 
siderable trouble, and as the visitors were coming into the 
Gardens, and fearing that the ladies and children would 
be alarmed, I desired my son Edward to get his gun. 
Having stationed him on the'top of the bank by my side, 
I directed the men to drive the boar towards us. As he 
came rushing along my son fired down upon his head, the 
charge taking effect and stopping his gallop ; he then 
staggered for a second and threw himself over on his side, 
but he regained his legs, came over the bank and charged 
right and left. 

By this time three or four of the men came up and 
tumbled him over. He fought some time longer, and, 
considering the injury inflicted on the skull, every ,one 
was surprised at the tenacity of life exhibited by this 



The subject of the fox is one about which very little 
is generally known except by sportsmen and what is 
taught in fables, and probably a few remarks regarding 
the canine race may not be without some interest to the 
reader. The finding a fox is considered by many a great 
piece of good luck, but it does not always lead to the 
desired end ; in one case the starting may be apparently 
easy, but in the run a very difficult and dangerous piece 
of ground has to be got over. Old-fashioned notions and 
prejudices are things that have produced many hard 
knocks and heavy falls, nevertheless those who hunt must 
take their chance in the field. 

It is often and firmly asserted that there are strong 
relative connections between the fox and the dog, and the 
question of the so-called " fox-dog " is brought forward as 
an instance, gamekeepers especially being very positive 
that a cross can be obtained between those two animals, 
this supposed cross having a stronger hold on the mind of 
many persons than that between the hare and the rabbit. 
Now any one who denies the existence of an animal said 
to be the produce of a fox and a dog nins the risk of being, 
like an unfortunate fox, hunted to death. Yet that risk 
must be incurred. During many years of careful observ- 
ations in regard to the matter, numerous specimens have 
been submitted to the writer's inspection by most trust- 



worthy people, yet in no one instance has the fullest, most 
complete, and minutest investigation revealed any proof 
that the statement, respecting the parentage of the animal, 
was based upon facts. 

The most foxy-looking of the specimens was considered 
by its owner to be undoubtedly a cross between a dog-fox 
and a small terrier bitch ; in size it was less than a fox, 
being shorter in body and legs, and of a bright, sandy red ; 
with ears erect and tail drooping, its little sharp muzzle 
at first reminded one of a fox, but upon the most careful 
comparison the result given below will be seen — in fact, 
only in size did this little dog differ from the dingo of 
Australia ; it was nothing more nor less than a dwarf or 
bantam dingo in every particular. However much in 
appearance the supposed fox-dog may resemble the fox, 
yet when placed by the side of a veritable fox and ex- 
ternally compared, all the points advanced previously in 
its favour fall off one by one in the following order : — Eyes 
(pupil of) : Dog — circular ; fux — vertical. Nose and muzzle : 
Dog — rounded, and the lips thick and few whiskers ; fox 
— sharp, and the lips thin, but the whiskers well developed. 
Mouth : Dog — canine teeth stout, strong, rather short, not 
much curved ; fox — canine teeth long, slender, sharp, and 
much curved. No dog unless larger than a fox Las the 
canine teeth so much developed, and the gape of the fox 
is wider than in the dog of about the same size. Ears : 
Dog — colour outside the same as the neck and back, inside 
thinly edged with short hair ; fox — colour outside black, 
inside thickly fringed or coated with long and rather stiff 
hair, in fact the ears appear full of hair. Coat : Dog — 
hair somewhat stiff', harsh, short or only moderately long, 
and of an uniform colour to the base of the hair ; no woolly 
undercoat ; fox — hair long, points harsh, lower half soft 
and the base dark-coloured, a fine wool forming a thick 



undercoat. Legs, feet, and toes : Dog — short, stout, and 
thick, blunt claws, directed downwards in the front feet ; 
fox — slender, long, and with thin and usually sharp claws, 
not directed downwards, but standing forward. Tail : 
Dog — somewhat flattened, never reaching the ground, and 
terminating with a point; fox — a round woolly brush, 
reaching and touching the ground, and terminating with 
a pendulous tuft. 

Not one of the fox-dogs submitted to the writer's in- 
spection possessed a single character recorded above as 
belonging to the fox ; it would, however, be too much to 
expect that a gamekeeper, who has for years cherished the 
belief in fox-dogs, would dispel the charm and undeceive 
himself, but he may some day quietly hint that, after all, 
the case would admit of the least possible doubt. 

The slender body and limbs of a fox are undiscernible 
when clothed as they are by nature with the long, fine, 
and woolly fur ; but divested of the skin, and placed by 
the side of an Italian greyhound, in the same condition, 
the fineness of the form is at once discernible, the latter 
(the Italian greyhound) appearing very clumsy. The 
comparison can be better judged by those who have seen 
and could look at a skinned hare and rabbit side by side, 
but who would probably shudder at the sight of a skinless 
dog or fox. 

Whatever may be said about the difference existing 
between dogs and foxes will not hold good in reference to 
dogs, wolves, and jackals. 

Wolves and jackals appear so alike that the only 
appreciable distinction is the size ; and so closely do they 
resemble many dogs, not only in appearance but in habit, 
and breeding freely in captivity and producing fertile 
progeny, that no difficulty presents itself in regarding 
them as of or from one stock. The manner in which a 



tame wolf or jackal will jump round liis master to be 
caressed, wagging his tail and rolling on the ground, 
licking his owner's hand and foot, clearly shows that either 
of those animals is more closely allied to the dog than to 
the fox, which never, even when most tame, exhibits any 
of these signs. 

The fox is not disposed to that kind of familiarity with 
our species, and is totally unsuited to be made or become 
a domestic animal, while, on the contrary, the dog is the 
most domestic animal in the world, found everywhere 
associated with man, and lending his skill, ingenuity, 
strength, and courage to his master. 

There can be no doubt therefore that, whatever may 
have been the origin of the domestic dogs of endless 
variety, the fox must be regarded as a very, very distant 
relation, little more, in fact, than a slight acquaintance or 
an ally. 

One thing is certain that foxes do not breed in confine- 
ment, except in rare instances ; the silver fox of North 
America is the only species recorded to have bred in the 
Zoological Gardens of London, and Mr. Darwin remarks, 
in his Animals and Plants under Domestication, that he 
never heard of the European fox breeding in captivity. 

Apart from any other consideration, a fox may be dis- 
tinguished from a dog, without being seen or touched, by 
its smell, which on entering a house or a room in which 
one is kept is at once discernible ; no one can produce a 
dog that has half the perfume of Reynard, and this per- 
fume the fox-dog would doubtless possess were its sire a 
dog-fox or its dam a vixen. 

A few further remarks may now be added respecting 
the variableness in the habits of the true fox as compared 
with the dog, the wolf, and the jackal. The latter animals 
are respectively found uniting in packs, and the meeting 



of a pack of either wolves or jackals is a common and 
often dreaded event to the weary traveller in the countries 
where they abound ; on the other hand, it is not on record 
that a pack of foxes was ever encountered ; thus in this 
respect, a difference in disposition is at once clearly dis- 
cernible. In seeking food, the fox is very crafty and sly, 
stealing alone upon its prey; while the dog, wolf, and 
jackal are more sociable, and by uniting in numbers 
become bold, and aid each other in attacking large game, 
thereby exhibiting an amount of intelligence far superior 
to the wily fox. The want of courage and confidence in 
this cunning and unsociable rascal keeps him on a level 
with all wild and timid animals unfitted for domestication. 
Strangely do we find three colours, either distinctly or 
blended together, in every shade and possible variety of 
arrangement upon the skins of the really domestic 
animals, as in the dog, horse, ass, sheep, goat, oxen, camel, 
llama, reindeer, pig, rabbit, guinea-pig, cat, etc. Black 
and white, brown and white, black and broAvn, or all 
three, black, white, and brown, are found on the same 
animal, as in the tortoise-shell cat, rabbit, or guinea-pig ; 
again, animals wholly black, or white, or brown are met 
with in the different breeds of cattle — goats, sheep, horses, 
rabbits, dogs, cats, pigs, etc. 




It is no uncommon remark, that it has rained cats and 
dogs. But this happens, however, only occasionally about 
Christmas time, and then the shower has generally been 
confined to the stage during the performance of the 
pantomimes. Nevertheless, we have living amongst us 
a sufficient number of these useful domestic pets to pro- 
duce a heavy storm of rage and fury by the terrible 
amount of mischief and danger met with by their in- 
creasing number, and it becomes us to draw attention to 
so serious a subject, in order to lessen the nuisance. In 
the first place, let us have some means of knowing who 
are the rightful owners of the animals, and we may then 
be able to get rid in a merciful way of the poor half- 
starved, un-owned, discarded creatures that infest the 
streets, and endanger our lives by their miserable, diseased, 
and vicious condition. 

An increase in the amount charged as a tax on dogs 
would most likely cause many persons who keep dogs to 
conceal them, and endeavour to avoid payment, whereas 
the small amount of 5s. is not worth the risk or trouble, 
and would be found to produce an equal if not a larger 
revenue, as many would perhaps pay for two if they had 
them, rather than risk paying 10s. for one and smuggling 



over the other or others. In order to ensure the fair pay- 
ment, each dog should be suppHed with a small stamped 
medal ; it need not be larger than a fourpenny-piece. 
This must bear the Government stamp, and be affixed to 
the dog's collar, and any dog found without this mark 
should be liable to be seized by the persons appointed for 
this purpose. Doubtless, this law, if carried out, would 
quickly reduce the number of useless and dangerous dogs. 

The pest of cats can be treated in a similar manner. 
It may appear at first much more difficult, no doubt, but, 
like many other newly-thought-of schemes, if fairly tried, 
may be found to work well after a while. It cannot be 
denied that the enormous number of useless and disowned 
cats are a most vexatious and distressing annoyance ; the 
depredations they commit are generally at night, not 
only in gardens and out-buildings but in our habitations, 
killing and carrying off all kinds of birds, rabbits, poultry, 
etc., and doing much damage to our food, etc., and causing 
no end of trouble by stealing, and disturbing our peace 
by fighting and quarrelling. Now, in order to come to 
terms let a small tax be levied on cats, say 2s. 6d. per 
annum. Few are so poor that for the usefulness of a cat 
would object to pay that sum ; and when we consider the 
mimber of houses, say in London alone, what a marvellous 
amount would be raised by this much-required reform. 
Many houses have four or five cats, and can well afford 
the tax, and the cats could be supplied with a small 
Government stamp and a receipt for the tax at the same 
time. There is no real difficulty in fixing a small collar 
upon a cat that would in no way interfere with its comfort 
or usefulness. 

The dog and cat tax could be collected together, and 
would therefore involve no additional expense. 

No doubt the difficulty of ascertaining the number of 



cats upon any establishment would be considerable ; but 
this is also the case with many other taxes — income tax, 
to wit ; but in the main most of the difficulty would be 
with lodgers, as doubtless in a house let out in tenements 
a cat would most likely be found in every room. The 
occupiers doubtless in many cases would deny its owner- 
ship. In such case the cat must be seized, and the 
owner, if it had one, must claim the animal within a 
given time, or it would be destroyed. This would soon 
settle the right of cat-keeping. Cat-keeping has in some 
instances been carried to such an extent, that persons 
fond of them have been found with twenty or thirty in 
the same room or house, to the great discomfort of the 
neighbourhood. Such dens would be got rid of if such a 
tax were introduced. 

One of the very common practices in cat-keeping is to 
save two or three of the kittens from every litter. These 
poor things are reared until they become a trouble in the 
house of their birth ; it seems then cruel to destroy them, 
so they are generally taken some distance, and turned 
adrift to shift for themselves. They soon become alarmed 
and wild, and are frequently hunted by dogs, boys, and 
every one who raises a cry of strange cat. The poor 
wretch, half-starved, is at last killed in a very brutal 
manner, and probably the culprit arrested by the nearest 
beadle or constable of the Society for the Prevention of 
Cruelty to Animals, taken before a magistrate, and 
sentenced to one or two months' imprisonment for cruelty 
to the animal. 

This part of the subject requires special attention, for 
the old saying that " a cat has nine lives," is founded upon 
ancient and well-authenticated authority, and it would 
be well if some of the officers and others who undertake 
to judge of this matter, would take the trouble to 



ascertain the most humane and speedy method of killing 
cats, before they condemn an unfortunate amateur, who 
perhaps for the first time in his life, makes the attempt, 
and finds he has made what is considered a cruel failure, 
and for which he is sometimes unmercifully punished. 

The wild cat (Felis catus) difiers in many particulars 
from the domestic cat ; at the same time, they breed freely 
together, and many instances are on record of fertile off- 
spring having been produced. S. E. Pusy, Esq., has bred 
and successfully crossed the wild and domestic cats, 
several of which have been received and exhibited in the 

There is a great want of intelligence observable among 
the cat tribe, because, during the period that the common 
house cat has kittens, she does not usually know the differ- 
ence between her own young or the young of either rats 
or squirrels, as I have seen a cat suckling both at the same 
time, licking and attending them as her own. 

The variety of the domestic cat known as the " tortoise- 
shell" is, as a rule, a female, the opposite sex being 
represented by the black, sandy, tabby and striped cats. 

Another singular variety of domestic cat is that known 
as the Manx or tailless cat. This variety is certainly 
common in the Isle of Man, but I have seen plenty of 
cats on the island with long tails, and many whose length 
of tail was intermediate, varying from 2 in. to 10 in. 

I have found the temper and disposition among cats to 
be most variable, in fact few animals in my opinion 
present so many individual differences in the same species. 
I have no doubt that the loss of many of the lives of 
human beings who have been attacked by cats is attribut- 
able to the sudden impulsiveness to which all cats are 
liable ; and it is, I consider, at all times dangerous to trust 
even the tamest of lions or tigers. 



In illustration of this fact no better examples than that 
of the two or three clouded tigers that have been in the 
Gardens can be found. The largest male, which lived in the 
small mammal-house for years, was the tamest and most 
good-tempered of wild beasts ; on the other hand, the 
smaller one in the lion-house was about the most ill- 
tempered savage that ever came into the Gardens, although 
he was at the time I procured him a very young animal. 



Next in importance to the history of the human family 
stands that of the great apes. In consequence of their 
near approach, apparently, to man in their physical struc- 
ture, their resemblance to him has always created a vast 
amount of interest, of astonishment, and of speculation 
in the minds of the most intelligent of those persons who 
have had the opportunity of observing these animals. 
They are regarded with more or less interest, fear, wonder, 
and superstition, not only among the most highly 
civilized of our species, but also among the natives of the 
countries inhabited by them. 

The difficulty of obtaining reliable information, and the 
still greater difficulty of obtaining specimens, have hitherto 
prevented the true history of these strange brutes becom- 
ing known; notwithstanding this, we are gradually and 
certainly progressing in our knowledge of them. The 
travels of Mr. Wallace in Borneo brought to light much 
respecting the habits of the great Ourang-utang which 
is found in that country. The papers upon the subject 
published in the Annals of Natural History are full of 
interesting information, and the care and trouble with 
which the knowledge was obtained deserve our warmest 

With regard to the Gorilla, the subject of the present 
notice, it is to be regretted that our knowledge concerning 
the habits and customs of this member of the ape family 



is still very limited, although there is no reasonable doub 
that this animal was discovered two thousand three 
hundred years ago. It may appear strange that this large 
and formidable beast should have remained so little known 
during that long period, but when we consider the danger 
to which the traveller must be exposed in his attempts to 
penetrate into the country inhabited by this monster and 
the little chance held out of his return, together with the 
small inducement to risk so much in travelling in these 
regions, the absence of any reliable information on the 
subject is, in a measure, accounted for. We are, therefore, 
obliged to rely either on the statements which have been 
made from time to time by travellers who have visited the" 
country or on what the natives who reside there have told 
the explorers. It must be borne in mind that it would be 
as unjust not to accept statements as it would be unwise to 
adopt and to readily believe some of them. It, therefore, 
becomes necessary to carefully consider, from what we do 
know, the probability of the truth of the various travellers' 
tales that have been told. By the natives it is stated 
(and history agrees) that these animals always attack man 
and invariably carry off women and children, and that 
individuals of our species have been obtained by the apes 
and kept among them for years. Such accounts have been 
received from the simple-minded natives, whose honesty 
and truthfulness are sometimes in strong and painful 
contrast to the misrepresentations of the more highly 
educated, enlightened, and less humble. Certain it is 
that the natives of the country entertain the greatest 
fear and dread of these creatures. Our surprise at this is 
at once removed by an examination of the animal. Its 
power must be prodigious ; its fierce and brutal aspects 
render it at once the most repulsive of brutes; the 
enormous size of its arms, its grasping power, the large 



size and strength of its teeth and jaws, all tend to prove 
that not the least doubt can be entertained respecting the 
danger of its attack. Added to all these physical advan- 
tages it is said to be gregarious, which is highly probable, 
as many of the large baboons of Africa are well known to 
be so, and the nearly-allied chimpanzee is also said to be 
met with in family groups. 

The assertion by travellers that this last animal and 
the gorilla are said to defend themselves with sticks and 
stones appears to require confirmation. We already know 
that the ourang of Borneo when pursued will ascend the 
highest trees, and tearing off the branches, or large fruit, 
shower them down in a terrific manner, exhibiting his rage 
and strength, doubtless for the purpose of intimidating his 
pursuers. He does not, however, appear to throw these 
direct at the object of his displeasure. The African 
species differs considerably from the ourang of Borneo and 
Sumatra, and probably may do something more than 
throw down the branches, etc. It has been ascertained 
from anatomical examination of dead specimens that these 
large apes appear, beyond doubt, to approach nearer than 
any other known mammal in their structure to man. It 
is desirable, on the other hand, to examine and to point out 
as clearly and as briefly as possible, in what they appear 
to differ mostly from man, in order that, by a few character- 
istics, we may be at once able to distinguish the one from 
the other, believing that we have in the gorilla the 
nearest approach, in formation, than any other represent- 
ative of the brute creation to the human species. It is 
evident from the contracted form of the hind limbs that 
the gorilla cannot stand upright; the bent or stooping 
posture, coupled with a heavy body, renders this animal 
unable to progress on the ground without the assistance 
of his front limbs. When walking on a plain surface the 



fingers are half closed and he walks on his knuckles, which 
are bent under at the second joints ; the toes also, except 
the great toe, or thumb, of the hind foot are also bent 
under so that he walks on them and the outside of the 
foot and heel. In this respect, therefore, it is seen that 
he is at once inferior to man, and that it requires no 
argument to be adduced in order to separate the gorilla 
from the human race, nor is any great power of discern- 
ment necessary to distinguish him. Numerous other 
peculiarities can be pointed out : the coarse, strong, 
grasping heavy paws ; the short and ill-developed thumb ; 
the want of flexibility in the fingers, v^hich are joined 
together as by a web from the second joint, renders 
the performance of the multifarious duties of a hand 
utterly impossible. These easily-observed differences are, 
however, not the most important ones. The greatest 
dissimilarity which attracts our attention is to be observed 
in the form of the skull, and in the development of the 
brain and the nerve system ; the small size of the brain, 
as compared with the weight and bulk of the animal, 
when considered relatively in connection with man, shows 
so marked a contrast that the utter want of intelligence is 
no longer a matter of surprise. 

There is one thing well worthy of notice respecting the 
gorilla, chimpanzee, and ourang — it is that the brain in 
the young animals appears larger in proportion to their 
youthful condition, but as soon as the shedding of their 
first set of teeth sets in the bones of the face, together 
with the jaws, enlarge to a certain extent, the permanent 
teeth are developed of a much larger size than the former 
ones, and the brain appears not only to be checked in its 
growth, but from the increased thickness of the skull in 
the adult the brain seems to be cramped in a smaller 




Joe was a great favourite, full of tricks and tolerably 
intelligent. Many of his funny ways have been told in 
print. I frequently had him on my back and shoulders, 
and was so familiar with him that I, in fact, thought him 
perfectly free from vice ; in this, however, I was greatly 
deceived. Master Joe seemed particularly fond of a man 
named Dexter, employed in the menagerie ; Dexter now 
and then would have a romp with Joe. One day Joe was 
on Dexter's back apparently full of fun when, without the 
slightest warning, he flew at Dexter's throat, biting him 
severely, and it was with some difficulty that he was 
removed. After this my advice was, " Keep Joe at a re- 
spectful distance." This treachery is not uncommon among 
pet wild animals. 

POOR joe's effects. 

The following letter appears to have been intended for 

the '' animal doctor " who had had the honour of treating 

the famous chimpanzee : — 

" April \,\^ni. 

" Sir, — Your account for the medicine supplied to poor 'Joe' 
has come to hand ; I am at a loss to know what to do about it. 
It is difficult, and perhaps impossible, to ascertain what property 
' Joe ' has left in his native country. He has not supplied us with 
the names and addresses of any of his family, and he died with- 
out a will, in fact, he died much against his will, and the very 
small effects (principally his wardrobe) left by him, if sold by 
auction, would barely cover the expense of the advertisement; 
and unless well advertised no one would look at them. i 

" It is quite possible they would sell better if not looked at \ 
Another difficulty will be to catalogue the lots ; they would con- 
sist of wearing apparel (and, may we say, jewellery) ; his chain, 
collar, and fancy necklace might be thought a desirable addition \ 
to some young swell's adornment, knowing how much their 

134 ! 


former possessor was admirerl by the fair sex. His rope-swing 
and pole would certainly go towards balancing bis last account ; 
the former might be used to suspend, for a time, a troublesome 
creditor, perhaps suspend him long enougli to prevent his making 
a second application. 

"These matters may be worth your consideration before pro- 
ceeding to extreme measures. We have reason to believe that 
' Joe's ' estate was partly claimed by King Coffee, still there is 
the landed property together with the timber and fruit trees, to 
say nothing about his forests of nuts (over which ' Joe ' had the 
first pick and as frequently the last), at the time King Coffee 
was busy stealing from somebody else. We have considerable 
doubt, however, if 'Joe' had much wealth deposited in the 
Coomasie bank, and, if so, a considerable deal more doubt as to 
its recovery, as a very heavy check (cheque) has fallen due upon 
all the banks in that country. 

"A. D. Baetlett." 

I cannot remember now whether this letter ever reached 
its destination. 



In every part of the world the ceremony of marriage is 
characterized by some form of festival, an indication of 
mirth and joy, depending much upon the circumstances of 
the parties. Separate and distinct nations have their own 
peculiar way of celebrating a wedding. A work in which 
these rites and ceremonies were given would, if written, 
form a very acceptable volume. Particulars could be col- 
lected and given with many interesting details, all tend- 
ing to show the habits of our species, together with much 
useful and valuable information brought under one head. 

However, the ceremony I am about to relate is of a 
nature a step lower in creation than is usual, and one not 
so frequently met with as the union of a pair of our own 
species, nevertheless the facts are very remarkable and 



show an amount of intelligence in the larger apes that 
will, by many, be scarcely believed. That these brutes 
have a quick mode of displaying either their love or their 
anger no one can doubt, and upon seeing, for the first time, 
two of them of opposite sexes brought within sight of each 
other it is most interesting to note the affectionate manner 
of meeting ; it is singular and worthy of record. The fact 
that there is apparently little in other lovers of which to 
make choice, may perhaps lead us to say it is love at " first 
sight;" and this appears certainly to be the case, for there 
can be but little difference in their personal appearance, 
since the colour of the hair, general complexion, and form 
of features are wonderfully alike in all this species, when 
looked at from a human being's point of view. 

Moreover, a person who, by long experience and frequent 
opportunity of watching, is able to imitate the sounds of 
their voices and their gesticulations can encourage them 
to recognize and respond to him when he endeavours to 
attract their attention, thus showing that their language 
is very limited and upon a level with that of most other 
animals, and probably quite incapable of any advance or 

Their utterings consist simply of sounds expressive 
of either pain, fear, pleasure, or anger, and by the imita- 
tion of these the animal is influenced immediately. It is 
therefore easily ascertained upon the introduction of the 
individuals whether it is likely to be one of friendship or 
otherwise, by the voice and manner. This was singularly 
illustrated upon the occasion about to be narrated. 

The antics of a healthy chimpanzee are certainly ex- 
tremely remarkable. Full of drollery and lively mischief, 
he is playful and determined in sport, and carries on his 
frolics with great energy; jumping about, slapping the 
ground, drumming with all fours, climbing, tumbling, roll- 



ing over and over, turning somersaults, swinging from place 
to place, standing erect and hammering Nvith his hands 
after the fashion of a boxer; screaming when hurt or 
offended, and making friends as soon as the fit is over, but, 
nevertheless, revengeful at the moment, inflicting sharp 
bites on the instant ; fearfully jealoiis of a rival, and, when 


enraged, rushes to attack with great fury, but, if defeated, 
beats and knocks himself about. 

The chimpanzee looks intently on any new object and 
examines, apparently with great care and minuteness, 
everything placed within reach ; soon, however, he, like a 
spoilt child, discards the new things and looks anxiously for 
something else to amuse him. 




Seldom has the chance fallen to the lot of any one to 
witness the first meeting of a pair of these singularly 
interesting animals. 

In the present instance the female, " Sarah " by name, 
had resided in the Gardens many months, and in all 
probability had not seen one of her species for a very 


long time. Her age was about five years, or perhaps a 
little older, at the time that the event which is about to 
be related occurred. 

In the month of August 1865 a fine male, about the 
same age and size as " Sarah," had been obtained from a 
dealer in Liverpool. It was thought desirable to introduce 
him at once to " Sarah." Upon seeing each other they 



both uttered short sounds, and protruding their thin lips 
as fiir as possible, until they formed a pointed appearance, 
they leaned forward towards each other until their lips 
touched, as if gently kissing ; this occurred while the male 


was outside the wire- work. The door of the large cage, 
in which was the female, was then opened, and the two 
animals rushed into each other's arms, and, squatting on 
the floor of the den, hugged each other in the most 



affectionate embrace, at the same time littering sounds 
of gratification and satisfaction. In a few seconds they 
rose up on their legs and, standing as erect as their form 
would allow, with their arms raised above their heads, they 
grasped each other's front paws and gave .vent to loud 
yells and howling screaming barks, at the same time look- 
ing upwards as if returning thanks to some invisible friend. 
The house resounded again and again with the sound of 
their powerful voices. After this performance a more 
minute examiuation took place. They searched one another 
all over, smelling and gently feeling each other from top 
to toe, then gave each other another hearty hugging and 
uttered a more gentle vocal congratulation. Thus the two 
strangers made friends and sympathized with each other, 
wonderfully like human beings. 


A chimpanzee which I tried to educate made miserable 
attempts to thread a large packing-needle, and also to 
unlock or lock a door. The nearest approach to success 
was in the attempt to spin a humming-top, but this was 
only accomplished with great assistance. A chimpanzee 
in the Gardens was compelled always to use a spoon, 
which he did with considerable difficulty. This natural 
want of intelligence in the chimpanzee prevents his learn- 
ing, and it is easier to teach a dog, who, from his superiority 
of brain power and instinct, more readily understands 
every action and word of command. 

Our chimpanzee was very proud of a fine showy dress, 
allowing himself to be measured, and showed every in- 
telligence towards the dress-maker to have a scarlet 
velvet dress fitted on. 




The nearly adult female in the Society's collection was 
able to bend and tear out the iron bars of a den sufficiently 
strong to hold a lion. 


Welcome, little Stranger ! You 
Are tlie darling of the Zoo, 
Bartlett's babe, the public pet. 
Lucky, lucky Zoo to get. 
At a cost scarce worth the mention, 
Living proof beyond contention 
Of — oh ! well, of whatsoever 
Savants sage and ciitics clever, 
On their controversial mettle 
May — or maybe may not — settle. 
Six-and-twenty years ago 
(Buffers elderly majr know) 
Kose the great Gorilla feud ; 
Dr. Gray was rather rude, 
Kather on Du Chaillu down, 
And the sliindy stirred the Town. 
Owen, great on brains and bones. 
Lectured it in learned tones ; 
Huxley to the battle rushed ; 
Mutually they "pished" and "tushed" 
In that calm and courteous way 
Savants have, when they're in fray. 
Mr. Punch, with ample reason, 
Called you "Lion of the Season," 
Great Gorilla. Now 'tis plain 
The old fame revives again. 
Happy Bartlett ! Lucky Ape ! 
Fortune conies in curious shape. 
You perchance, oh simian child ! 
Might have roamed the Afric wild, 


Like a nigger unreclaimed, 
Unobserved, unknown, unnamed, 
Fame concerning you quite dumb, 
Even your "colossal thumb," 
By the scribes who columns vamp us, 
Undescribed ; your "hippocampus" 


" heee's another gxjt ! " 
or, the baby gorilla at the zoo, 

Nurse Bartlett. "He shall have a Fifteen-Shilling Pine, he shall! and Finest 
English Hot-house Grapes, he sliall ! and Gold-Dust too, if he cries for it, the little 
Darling ! " 



(Whatsoever that may be) 

Not of notoriety. 

Now ! — Ah, infantine Gorilla, 

Every small suburban villa 

With your rising fame will ring ; 

All the sort of folk who bring 

Buns unto the prisoned bear, 

To your cage will come, and stare. 

Buns? Oh, Bartlett, — master sage, 

Autocrat of den and cage ! — 

Nothing will begrudge, I'm sure. 

That may nourish, please, or cui-e 

His prognathous little pet. 

Half the luxuries you'll get 

Would leave satiate and cloyed 

Any hungry "Unemployed." 

Cakes— and, if you like it. Ale — 

Oh, Gorilla, will not fail ; 

Gunter's you may sack at will, 

Or, if you prefer to fill 

Otherwise your dainty maw 

Than with sweeties and stickjaw. 

Like the indiscriminate bear. 

You may choose your Bill of Fare. 

Toys? Ah, bring them, baby, quick; 

Will a monkey on a stick 

Touch a sympathetic chord? 

Well, let's hope you won't be bored, 

Baby Ape, by Bartlett's love. 

And the crowds who'll stare and shove, 

Long for Afrio wild but free, 

And a station "up a tree," 

Watching, with prehensile thumb, 

For — whatever food may come. 




The annals of the Zoological Society contain some 
interesting records of the gorilla. 

At an evening meeting of the Zoological Society, held 
on February 22, 1848, a paper was read by Professor 
Owen on a new species of chimpanzee. This animal was 


distinguished from the well-known chimpanzee by the 
skull alone, and the name proposed by the Professor was 
Troglodytes Savagei, after Dr. Thomas Savage, by whom 
it had been discovered, and its existence made known to 
Professor Owen. 

At an evening meeting of the above Society, held on 



April 11, 1848, Professor Owen read a supplementary note 
on the great chimpanzee, and led him to adopt the name 
proposed by its discoverer, of Troglodytes Gorilla, adopting 
the term used by Hanno in describing the wild men 
which he discovered on the coast of Africa during his 
famous voyage. 

On January 11, 1859, Professor Owen read a very ex- 
haustive paper upon the external characteristics and 
affinities of the gorilla, specimens, more or less perfect, 
having been received in spirits. In 1861 we had the 
adventures and explorations by Paul B. du Chaillu, who 
brought to England skins and skulls of adult gorillas, and 
gave full descriptions of the habits of these and other 
members of the family; and, although much doubt was 
at the time expressed of the truth of Du Chaillu's state- 
ments, many of them have since that time been fully 

There is always considerable difficulty in obtaining 
authentic information with reference to the history of 
almost all important animals. The owners have, naturally, 
a wish to sell them at the highest price, and are not 
always very particular in their statements as to the cost 
and trouble they have had in obtaining them ; and it is 
sometimes useless and vexatious to make inquiries that 
are answered by such unlikely stories, that, if published, 
would be scouted as absurd fables. Such being the 
ordinary condition under which animals of this kind are 
offered for sale, it is a waste of time to attempt, in most 
cases, to ascertain the truth. 

I have taken the liberty of reproducing the portrait, 
the original block having been destroyed by fire. 




It may seem strange that, considering that the Zoo- 
logical Gardens have been established over sixty years, no 
specimen of the gorilla has hitherto been received or ex- 
hibited in their vast collection. From time to time within 
the last twenty years examples of this remarkable animal 
have reached Europe; they have been but few — perhaps 
not more than five or six — but, owing to their poor con- 
dition or the exorbitant price asked for them, the Society 
never felt disposed to purchase any of them. One or two 
only of those that have been imported have lived more 
than a few weeks. Under these circumstances, it has 
always been considered a very risky speculation to pur- 
chase an animal whose life was so likely to prove a short 

The individual, now exhibited for the first time in the 
Gardens, arrived on Monday, October 10, having been 
landed on the previous Friday at Liverpool, Mr. Cross, 
the well-known animal dealer, being the purchaser. LIr. 
Cross lost no time in transferring the animal from Liver- 
pool to the residence of the well-known chimpanzee 
" Sally." On arrival the poor beast appeared to be com- 
pletely exhausted, and almost lifeless; no doubt partly 
from exposure to the cold and the shaking and noise of the 
railway journey. In this condition no one could be expected 
to offer to purchase the animal ; in fact, the owner, Mr. 
Cross, could not ask any one to take it, however low the 
price he might ask ; all he asked was that it might be 
attended to, and that whatever could be done to save it 
should be done. After a day or two's careful attention 
it began to revive, and the first food that tempted it was 
grapes. A variety of fine fruit was then placed at its 



disposal, consisting of pine-apple, fresh green figs, bananas, 
pomegranates, and grapes. The pomegranates appeared 
to be most favoured, for it took to this fruit with evident 
relish, leaving nothing but the hard outside shell. Since 
then it has fed upon pine-apple, grapes, apples, pears, 
bananas, dates, raisins, and bread. It has thus improved 
in strength and temper, and has already made friends 
with the keeper, Marsbridge, and, no doubt, will soon 
become an affectionate and amusing companion, and an 
interesting addition to the Society's splendid collection. — 
Land and Water, October 22, 1887, p. 342. 


The discovery in the Andaman Islands of a new species 
of Quadrumina was a very important addition to our 
knowledge of this interesting country. One or two species 
of monkeys were known to exist on the adjacent Nicobar 
Islands, the common Macaque {M. cynomolgus) being one 
of them, but until Captain Brown brought home the present 
individual no monkey was known to exist on the Andaman 
islands. One or more species of monkey being found on 
the Nicobar Islands would lead us to expect such a thing 
as highly probable, and had the same species of monkey 
been met with, nothing very remarkable would have been 
thought about it, but the discovery of a species hitherto 
unknown upon the islands that have already furnished 
us with a man and a pig that are quite unlike any of the 
neighbouring races, is a circumstance deserving particular 
attention, and affords materials for much speculation and 

This new and unique monkey was presented to the 
Zoological Society by Captain Brown, RN., of her 
Majesty's ship Vigilant. It dated its joining the ship's 



company, from Port Blair, Andaman Islands, in the Gulf 
of Bengal, lat. 11° 43' N., long. 92° 47' E., in the year 


1864. "Jenny" (for that is her name) was supposed to 
be eight or nine years old. For the last four years she 
had " served " on board the ship, and having passed all the 
dangers of the Abyssinian campaign, and discharged with 



a first-class certificate and silver chain and medal for 
good conduct, was waiting to receive her share of the 
prizes taken during the time she was in her Majesty's 

" Jenny " stood about 2 ft. 4 in. in height. In general 
appearance she was most like the " pig-tailed " monkey 
(Macacios nemestrinus), but was at once distinguished 
from this species by a remarkable arrangement of the 
hair on the top of the head, which was somewhat of a 
V-shape and was parted down the middle. The hair 
itself was very fine, and it was elegantly arranged 
round the ears. The first impression upon seeing this 
animal was, that it was intermediate between Macams 
rhesus and Macacus nemestrinus. The face was by no 
means fierce ; the features might even be called good- 
natured. She had been made a great pet by the sailors, 
the result being that she has been educated to an extra- 
ordinary degree of cleverness. She was fond of company, 
and her constant companion was a chicken (a regular ship 
chicken with hardly any feathers), which lived with her 
in cage day and night, and accompanied her in her per- 
ambulations. She walked upright on her hind legs with 
remarkable facility, and with much less effort than even 
the performing monkeys as seen in the London streets. 
When in an erect attitude she would carry things. Thus 
she would pick up her chicken and run about with it, 
holding it in her arms as a nurse does her child ; the 
chicken did not seem to mind this in the least. At the 
word, " Throw her overboard," " Jenny " threw the chicken 
smartly away from her. It has been said that monkeys 
would talk but that they know if they talked they 
would be made to work. Now the Andamanian " Jenny " 
formed an exception to the " working " part (only that was 
very agreeable work) of the story, for when a soda-water 



bottle was given her, she would set to work to untwist 
the wire ; this done, she would get out the cork, if it were 
not too tightly fixed, and then drink the contents of the 
bottle. Her attitude in drinking was something quite 
new. She sat down on her haunches, held the bottle with 
both hands, and tilted the end of it up with her hind foot, 
so that the liquid should flow at the proper level into her 
mouth. In this attitude her appearance was most comical, 
and at the same time most interesting. 

The most extraordinary part of " Jenny's " performance 
was that she smoked a pipe. Most monkeys will carry a 
pipe in their mouths and pretend to smoke, but this was 
the first monkey that we have ever known actually to 
smoke lighted tobacco out of a pipe. 

Our illustration shows " Jenny " adorned with her silver 
collar and war medal, enjo3'ing herself after her day's work. 
Most monkeys will drink grog, but "Jenny" was especially 
fond of it, and she always took her glass with her pipe, 
which she enjoyed quite as much as Forecastle Jack after 
he had been reefing topsails. Our friend Mr. Buckland 
called to see "Jenny"; the fair Andamanian, devoid of 
shyness, repaid the compliments this gentleman offered 
her, in monkey language, by snatching a half-smoked 
lighted cigar out of his mouth, and did him the honour to 
finish it, throwing away the end when it threatened to 
burn her lips. 

The Andaman natives are said to be the most degraded 
of human beings. If "Jenny" was an average sample 
of the monkeys, we would sooner be a monkey than a 
man, if nature had cast our lot in the far distant Andaman 




Not only is the generic distinction between the Old and 
the New World monkeys well marked by many external, as 
well as internal, differences, but their food and mode of 
feeding also differ to a very great extent. 

The marmoset and other South American monkeys 
feed almost exclusively upon insects, such as caterpillars, 
moths, butterflies, beetles, spiders, grasshoppers, and flies, 
together with fruit, green leaves, and berries ; occasionally 
small snakes, young birds, eggs, and the young of small 
mammalia. These articles form their principal food. But 
the true spider monkey (Ateles) is, more strictly speaking, 
a fruit and vegetable feeder, and this genus is noted for 
being of an extremely gentle, mild, and timid disposition. 
Having given a general outline of the kinds of food eaten 
in a wild state by these creatures, I have found that, in 
captivity, they can be kept by feeding them upon bread- 
and-milk, ripe fruit, vegetables both raw and cooked, 
such as potatoes, carrots, lettuce, and other green meats ; 
occasionally a fresh-killed sparrow or other small bird 
may be given, and for a change boiled or roast mutton ; 
the bones of fowls or rabbits may be given, and, in fact, 
almost any kind of animal food in small quantities. 

They are not affected in the slightest manner by the 



cold, and they will bear excessive heat. I have sometimes 
allowed some of the weakly and delicate members of this 
family to have free run of my house, and it is a perfect 
pleasure to find them basking before a large kitchen fire, 
lying on the hearth within the fender in such a position 
as would lead any one to expect that they would be 
roasted alive. Out of this they would run into the open air 
during the coldest weather in winter, to search the dust- 
bin for some anticipated toothsome delicacy ; this they 
frequently repeated without in any way receiving the 
.slightest injury ; in fact, I have always found them thrive 
better when allowed to have this freedom. 

It has sometimes happened that the marmosets have 
bred in captivity, producing one and sometimes two at a 
birth. The young one clings so tightly to the body of its 
mother that, being hidden in her long fur, it is very 
difficult to see. The young are suckled for five or six 
months, but remain with the mother long after this 
period, and become very amusing, darting off after some 
insects or other food which it has discovered, returning 
to the mother and hiding itself on her breast. 

My son Edward states that while in Peru he found a 
very handsome species ,of marmoset (Midas dcvilli). " This 
species is extremel}? delicate, and will not bear the least 
cold. I have had several alive for two or three weeks, 
but they appear to suffer from cold and die. They are 
kept, however, by the Indian women, who make pets of 
them and put them into the long hair on their heads; 
with this protection they are able to live for a long time. 
Having become tame, they frequently hop out to feed, 
and, having captured a spider or two, scamper back again, 
and hide under the luxuriant crop of hair of their owners, 
who are generally unwilling to part with them." 


Missing Page 


I have known more keepers and other persons killed or 
seriously injured by tame pet bears than by any other 

The occasions on which bears have managed to escape, 
for a short time, have not been numerous ; two or three 
only may be worthy of mention. On one occasion a Polar 
bear gave a great deal of trouble, but he was eventually 
driven into a place of safety and captured without any 
damage being done. This bear's escapade is narrated in 
the " Escape of Polar Bear." On another occasion an 
American black bear was clever enough to climb up a 
chain and escape from the bear-pit. 

I happened to see him from a distance, and, arming 
myself with a dusty stumpy old birch -broom, I went 
towards him. On coming up with him I dealt him a 
smack in the face with the broom which rather aston- 
ished him, and, with the dust in his eyes, he scampered 
away evidently in a very ill-humour, descending the steps 
of the terrace on to the lawn. He ran and tumbled about 
the chairs, giving me time to call for assistance. It was 
not long before three or four keepers put in an appearance 
armed with dung-forks and other weapons. Mr. Bruin 
then thought it desirable to try and return to the pit. 
To do this he ascended the steps, and, mounting the top of 
the terrace wall, walked along until he arrived at the pit 
from which he had escaped. I followed him at a respectful 
distance, and seeing that he was looking down into the 
pit, and fearing that he might have some difficulty in 
getting into it, or that he might change his mind and 
take another walk, I made a rush at him with the 
stumpy broom and sent him headlong below. I was afraid 
he was hurt, as he moved about very little for some days 





During the time Mr. A. Miller was Superintendent of 
the Zoological Society's Gardens the large Polar bear 
managed to escape from the place in which he was kept. 
He was discovered, a little before six o'clock one morning, 
seated among the shrubs in the Gardens, by Mr. Groom, 
the wire-worker and cage-maker of Great College Street. 
An alarm was immediately raised, and all the keepers were 
assembled armed with forks and sticks and anything else 
available. The head-keeper, James Hunt (with that care 
that becomes a thoughtful husband and father) made the 
best of his way to the apartments where his wife and 
children slept at the back of the old, or circular, aviary. 
Telling his wife of the danger, he closed the shutters of 
the windows and locked the door, making sure of their 
being safe. He then proceeded to the scene of action. 

Our white friend looked steadily at the pale faces, and, 
not appearing anxious to try his strength, he walked 
leisurely away from the crowd, who, like most other 
crowds, felt bound to follow. A strong cord' being in 
readiness and carried by Hunt, was thrown lasso-like and 
with good aim, the noose having caught over the animal's 
head. He at once made off, and quickly got over some 
palings ; but here a struggle took place. The men held on 
bravely, and the cord fitted tighter round the neck of our 
Arctic traveller, who now put forth his power, so much 
so that, after several jerks and a determined pull, snap 
went the line close under his ear, leaving the noose fixed 
like a tight collar round his throat. With an angry growl 
and a scratch or two with his paws he managed to rid 
himself of the unpleasant bandage, then shaking himself 



and looking round on all sides, seemingly with a deter- 
mination not to be caught in that way again, he trotted 
off at a brisker pace than before. No sooner was an 
attempt made to follow him than he turned to face his 
foes, and satisfied most of them that a too close ac- 
quaintance was dangerous ; at the same time it was clear 
that he had no particular wish to rush into mischief As 
the men stood still in a body he merely looked at them, 
and, after a few seconds' consideration, walked leisurely 

It was then arranged to muster in front of him when- 
ever he attempted to go in any direction leading out of 
the Gardens, or to any part of the Gardens in which he 
was likely to do damage. 

If this plan succeeded they could turn him without 
going near enough to be in any great danger, so after two 
or three hours' dodging him about they managed to drive 
him into the passage at the end of the Carnivora dens, on 
the north side and close to the den he had escaped from. 
Here he was at once secured. Possibly no one suffered, in 
comparison, anything equal to the fright of the wife and 
children of the head-keeper, whom he had carefully locked 
in, and who were in the dark all this time. They naturally 
supposed that everybody must have been killed, and that 
it would be their turn next, because the few hours of this 
dreadful suspense and uncertainty seemed a much longer 
time than was really the case. 



The very mention of this creature's name at once calls 
up the recollection of no end of queer stories and funny 
tales told by our Yankee cousins respecting the abomin- 
able and overpowering stench that may be encountered on 
too near an approach to this detestable animal. 

No one who has once had a taste of the odour — I use 
the word "taste" advisedly, as the sense, in some instances, 
by which smells or odours are perceived also at one and 
the same time begets a sense of taste, and therefore the 
perfume is tasted — would feel desirous of renewing the 
acquaintance ; so dreadful and nauseous is it that it, in 
some persons, produces sickness and headache of the most 
painful kind. As, however, every rule has its exception, 
so has this, as notwithstanding the terrible character 
attached to the skunk, it is a very clean and well-behaved 
individual ; in fact, a sweet skunk, if one may be allowed 
to make use of that mild expression. It is, indeed, re- 
markable and singularly interesting to find an animal of 
this description so tame and so good-tempered that it will 
allow itself to be tenderly handled and lo\'ingly caressed. 
This is the case with more than one sort of skunk. Several 
specimens of the common species of North America 
{Mephites mepliiticd) have been brought to this country 
perfectly tame and well-conducted ; had it been otherwise 
they never would have been allowed to cross the Atlantic, 
as one whiff of the odour most certainly would have called 
do^vn upon the offender the vengeance of the entii-e ship's 



company, and Mr. Skunk, with his perfumery, would most 
assuredly have been in imminent danger of being thrown 
overboard, and probably been the innocent means of dis- 
gusting some hungry shark. 

It may naturally be supposed that the skunks, which 
have arrived safely after a long sea voyage, have been sub- 
mitted to some kind of operation, and that the glands, by 
which the foetid odour is secreted, have been removed, or, 
more reasonably, that they have been subjected to some 
wonderful and far-famed disinfectant ; in fact, that the art 
of an American Rimmel had triumphed over nature ; but 
such is not the case. 

An amusing incident occurred not long since to a dealer 
in wild animals, who boasted that he had skunks that 
" had been deprived of their unpleasant properties, and 
thereby rendered clean and wholesome." However, to his 
utter dismay, while exhibiting a tame and harmless skunk 
to a customer, he accidentally held it within reach of a 
mischievous monkey, which, grasping the tail of the skunk, 
inflicted a sharp bite upon that sensitive appendage. At 
this trying moment the poor skunk resented the insult 
and injury in " true skunk fashion," and the result was 
perfectly astounding to the monkey, to the dealer, and to 
the would-be purchaser of the tame skunks ; had an ex- 
plosion of gas or of gunpowder taken place the latter 
would, in all probability, not have disappeared so com- 
pletely, for upon the dealer looking round his customer 
was nowhere to be seen, not even a vestige of him re- 
mained to bear witness to the " 'orrible tail," and it may 
not be out of place to mention that he never returned to 
complete the purchase, or even to inquire after that " tail." 
It is therefore advisable not to make too free or play too 
roughly with your tame skunk, or, like the unlucky ape, 
you are liable to be poisoned at any moment. 



Thebe have been kept in the Gardens for many years 
several kinds of the so-called sea-lions. 

Their principal food is mostly whiting, but I have 
never observed any of them masticate their food, they 
swallow it at a gulp. 

I was rather curious to know, in the event of one of 
the sea-lions capturing a large fish, what the creature 
would do. In order to satisfy myself upon this point, I 
procured a large codfish weighing about 16 lbs. ; this I 
gave to the male sea-lion. The beast seized it near the 
head, and, by a most violent jerky movement from side 
to side, tore a large mouthful out from the fish : this 
process he again and again repeated, and, by so knocking 
about and crushing the fish, it was in less than half-an- 
hour entirely consumed. 

He never attempted to use the front limbs to hold or 
assist in tearing it to pieces, but simply, by the bite and 
sharp jerk, disengaged the various portions. 


In 1865 I gave the following interesting particulars 
respecting the seal living in Cremome Gardens. In size 
it is larger than a full-grown mastiff dog, the neck very 
long and thick, the head rather narrow, but otherwise 



much like the head of a lioness, and the eyes very full 
and prominent (quite unlike our flat-eyed seals). The 
animal stands on all-fours, the hind feet, which are very 
long, being under the belly, and the front legs resting on 
the wrist with the feet turned outwards on each side. 
These latter feet are also very long, and with their aid it 
jumps and bounds along at a great rate of speed, reminding 
one of a weasel or polecat ; in this manner it progresses 
as fast, or nearly so, as a man can run. It climbs over 
chairs and other obstacles with great ease, ascends a 
raised platform upwards of 5 ft. high, and, at the word 
of command, pulls a trigger with its mouth and fires off a 
cannon. It roars or growls very much like a lioness, but 
less loudly, and exhibits great attachment for its keeper, 
but otherwise appears fierce to strangers. It rears itself 
perfectly upright against the keeper, clasps him round 
the neck with its front flippers and places its mouth to 
his lips. 

In this position it appears about 6 ft. high, and it 
certainly has more intelligence than any of the Felidce. 
If the keeper throws his cap across the room, the animal 
runs immediately after it, and returns with the cap in 
its mouth as readily as a well-trained dog. The colour 
of this animal is a rich brown ; the ears are narrow, and 
about 1 in. in length ; the nose is naked like that of a 
dog, but the nostrils are capable of being closed; the 
whiskers are long and curved downwards ; the tail shorter ; 
the hind feet have nearly straight claws, the fore feet 
have only rudiments of the claws visible ; the teeth are 
very dark in colour, and look like the teeth of a very old 




Of these intelligent and easily-trained animals the 
Society have of late been successful in obtaining several 
important additions. In 1870 the collection contained five 
species of this interesting family, consisting of the follow- 
ing genera, Otaria, Phoca, and CystopJurra, which are repre- 
sented by five species, viz. : — Otaria jubata, Cystoflwra 
crisfata, Phoca fodida, Phoca vitulina, and Phoca green- 

People living in London and other large cities think 
little of the large number of skins and enormous quantity 
of oil that is brought to this country annually, and which 
is obtained by the wholesale slaughter of these inofi'ensive 
animals, and have no idea of the numbers that must perish 
to supply the constant demand ; for this destruction is 
carried on not only in the Northern but in the Southern 
Ocean. It is in the latter that the much-prized far seals 
are obtained in the greatest abundance from the different 
species of Otaria, or eared seals, while most of the northern 
seals are known as hair seals. Both of these forms are 
represented in the Society's Gardens, but much difficulty 
exists in the min ds of most people in distinguishing a hair 
seal from a fur seal when ahve. The fact is that fur seals 
are covered with hair similar to the covering of the other 
kinds, but in the preparation of the skin the hairs are all 
plucked out, just as the skins of swans are plucked of their 

161 M 


feathers, leaving only the down, which fairly represents 
the fur left on the seal-skin after the hairs have been 
removed. The hair seals cannot be treated in this manner, 
as they do not possess the same kind of undercoat of fur, 
and, consequently, if plucked or denuded of hair, would be 
useful only as leather. 

The everlasting slaughter of the fish-eating animals has 
been carried on year, after year for ages with increasing 
skill; with the aid of steamships, and with the great 
improvement in fire-arms, it is a matter of surprise that 
their numbers hold out, for they breed but slowly, product 
but one at birth, and this but once in a year, and require 
several years to grow to maturity. Another equally 
wonderful matter, well worthy of consideration, is the 
supply of food required to sustain a large population of 
these fish-devouring animals. Take, for instance, the small 
species {Phoca mtulina) of our own shores, whose daily 
consumption in a captive state would be equal to 10 lbs. 
weight ; now it takes forty herrings to weigh 10 lbs., but 
no doubt when at liberty and full of activity the creature 
would eat a much larger quantity, therefore we may safely 
say that 1000 of these small seals would require 40,000 
herrings daily to support them. Now if we say that the 
northern seal fishery destroys 500,000 seals annually, some 
idea is given of the prodigious quantity of fishes that must 
be spared the same fate. We must therefore congratulate 
ourselves by supposing that a large portion of those fishes 
find their way to our tables instead of feeding our hairy, 
furry, and much-admired aquatic friends. The vastness of 
this inexhaustible supply is only faintly shadowed forth, 
the reality is beyond our comprehension. Imagine the 
abundance of fishes that must be consumed not only by 
the hundreds of thousands of different species of seals, 
porpoises, and other aquatic animals, but by the myriads 



of fish-eating birds, and also by the large predaceous fishes 
that live upon the smaller fry ; the apparently inexhaust- 
ible source is so wonderfully marvellous that the most 
fertile imagination almost fails to realize the possibility of 
a continuance of this state of things. 

Whatever we may know of the abundance of animal life 
on land is totally eclipsed by the mighty myriads of 
creatures that swarm in the ocean, who aid to support in 
endless ways the fowls of the air and the beasts of the 
field, for the vast quantities of fish captured are frequently 
turned upon the land to enrich the soil, for want of other 
and better uses. 

• According to the official report made to the juries of 
the Exhibition of 1851 by Nicholay and Son, the number 
of northern seal-skins imported to England annually would 
exceed 500,000, and probably an equal number are 
annually killed in the Southern Ocean. Now, taking each 
animal to consume the minimum allowance of 10 lbs. 
weight of fish daily, it would require upwards of 2232 tons 
of fish per day to feed this multitude of seals. Now, sup- 
posing these fish to be herrings, the number consumed 
would be over 20,000,000: 20,000,000 of herrings as 
the daily allowance for what we know to be only a 
trifling number of the seals that exist in the Northern 

It is very interesting to observe the amount of intelli- 
gence exhibited by the members of this family, the readi- 
ness with which they become perfectly tame; but their 
capability of being taught to perform a number of very 
remarkable tricks, considering their form and structure, is 
rendered the more wonderful, and goes far to prove how 
much depends upon the well-developed and large size of 
the brain, for in all the genera of this well-marked group 
or family the brain is remarkable for its bulk, as com- 



pared with the size of the animal. They soon become 
attached to any one who will take the trouble to feed 
and pet them. 


There was at one time considerable controversy in the 
daily papers on this subject, both sides strongly stating 
opposite facts. The following extract is from the letter of 
a skipper of a whaler, who had spent many years in the ice, 
and who since that made the famous voyage in the £rin, 
Mr. Leigh Smith's, to the Arctic regions : — " As regards 
the young seals, they can see as soon as they are born, I 
have shot the old seals in the act of giving birth to their 
young, and I found that they could see ; and I have shot 
old seals with the young in them, and I have found their 
eyes open and quite clear. I have also seen a seal give 
birth and make for the water at once, and the young ones 
follow to the edge of the piece of ice after the mother. 
Their eyes are quite bright at birth." 

To this question I am able to give a very positive 
answer. On May 23, 1868, I purchased of a dealer in 
Liverpool four adult seals. One of them proved to be in 
young, and was consequently placed by herself in a suit- 
able enclosure with a small pond. She soon became quite 
tame, and fed freely. On June 8 she became restless, and 
on the following day about twelve o'clock she produced a 
young one, near the edge of the water. It was covered 
with a, rather thick coat of hair, its eyes very Irightand wide 
open ; it turned and rolled about, divesting itself of the 
outer covering of hair, which formed a complete mat upon 
which the young animal lay. For the first hour or 
two after its birth it was very active, and within three 
hours it was swimming and diving about in the water 



like an adult animal. It uttered a low soft hah, or single 
call-note, and looked about after its mother and crawled 
towards her when she came out of the water. The mother 
would turn upon her side in order to let the young one 
suck. The young seal was 32 in. long, and weighed 20 lbs. 
at its birth. A notice written by me appeared in the 
Zoological Society's Proceedings, June 1868, recording the 
above facts : — 

notes upon the birth of a einged seal in the 
society's gardens, by a. d. bartlett, super- 
intendent OF THE society's GAEDENS. 

On May 23, 1868, the Society obtained from a 
dealer in Liverpool four fine adult seals {Phoca fostida), 
said to have been taken in Heligoland. I noticed that one 
of them was of large size, and suspected that it was a 
female in young. I therefore had her placed by herself in 
an enclosure with a small shallow pond of water. Here 
she soon became perfectly tame, and fed freely from the 
hand of the keeper. We continued to notice the increase 
of bulk, and the movements of the young one were quite 

On Monday, June 8, she was very uneasy, and appeared 
to me to be in considerable pain ; I therefore kept a con- 
stant watch, and the man who had charge of her remained 
with her all night. She continued in this state until about 
twelve o'clock on Tuesday, at which time she produced the 
young one. It was born near the edge of the water, and in 
a few minutes after its birth, by rolling and turning about, 
was completely divested of the outer covering of fur and 
hair, which formed a complete mat, upon which the young 
animal lay for the first hour or two after its birth. When 
bom it was very active, and within three hours afterwards 



was swimming and diving about in the water like an adult 
animal. It uttered a low soft lah, or single call-note, and 
looked about for its mother, and crawled towards her when 
she came out of the water. She turned upon her side in 
order to let it suck, and I had every reason to believe that 
all was going on well. The young seal slept well, some- 
times on its belly, sometimes on its side. The mother, 
however, appeared unwell and in great pain, and on the 
following day (Wednesday) suddenly plunged into the 
water and sunk to the bottom. Believing she was dying, 
I had her assisted out of the pond. She was in strong 
convulsions, and continued to roll and struggle until the 
next morning (this day), when she died. She appears to 
have had no milk. Finding the female unable to suckle 
her young one, I had it removed to the house, and have 
fed it by means of a bottle with warm milk, and a small 
quantity of cod-liver oil added to the milk. 

The statement having been made that the species of seal 
could be distinguished by the mode of shedding its first 
coat (I believe it is said that the common seal, P. vitulina, 
sheds its coat as soon as born, while the P.fcetida sheds its 
first coat before its birth), I beg to say that this supposed 
distinction is shown by the above remarks to be of no value 
whatever as a means of distinguishing the species. I have 
no doubt both species are alike in this particular ; and I 
have no doubt, from what I have seen, that the outer fur is 
sometimes shed before birth and sometimes immediately 
after birth in both species alike. 

The young seal was 32 in. long, and weighed 20 lbs. at 
its birth. 

It appears to me that the young animal shedding its 
outer covering compensates for the absence of the licking 
generally bestowed upon young animals by their mother. 
The seals never lick. 



The first walrus purchased for the Society was brought 
to this country in 1853. 

The second was brought to Dundee by one of the 
whalers belonging to Messrs. Stevens, on October 24, 
1867. I went to Dundee to see this walrus, purchased 
it for £200, and brought it to London on board one of the 
steamers bound from that place for the Thames, where it 
safely arrived. 

Its food consisted, principally, of mussels and clams, 
which I obtained from Yorkshire. It would also feed 
upon the flesh of whiting and cod-fish cut up without the 
bone. This animal lived, I think, about four months, the 
cause of death being perforation of the coats of the stomach 
by parasitic worms, which were, at the time, fully described 
by Dr. Murie in the Proceedings of the Society. 

As the animal when alive was immature, the tusks not 
being more than 2 in. or 3 in. long, I had the skull of an 
adult male walrus with fully-developed tusks, which were 
probably 15 in. or 16 in. in length, fastened to a tree in 
the walrus paddock, in order that the visitors might form 
an idea of the size of the skull and teeth of the full-grown 
animal. I was much amused one day by a decent-looking 
man, who appeared to be taking great interest in and 
studying the beast, asking me if he had shed that skull. 




Fewer animals are better known as pets than the 
common grey ichneumon, or, as it is more frequently 
designated, the mongoose. Scarcely a ship arrives from 
India that has not one of these sharp and lively little 
animals on board. Easily tamed and handled, they are 
much prized, and are, consequently, much in request. 
They, as is usual with most tamed animals, have a large 
share of praise bestowed upon them ; the many tales 
related of their intelligence and power, and of their 
courage in killing vermin, and poisonous and other snakes, 
have made them famous, and any attempt to speak of 
them other than in accordance with the belief so firmly 
established in the minds of the admirers of their many 
virtues and abilities, would undoubtedly call down upon 
their calumniator the wrath of the said admirers. 

That an animal so commonly kept and petted, and 
found so useful in ridding, to a tolerable extent, of vermin, 
buildings and habitations, in countries where rats, snakes, 
various lizards and innumerable pests abound, would 
naturally be greatly valued, there cannot be the least 
doubt, and the ichneumon, being such an animal, monopo- 
lizes a very large share of attention. It is, moreover, 
generally believed to possess the power of saving, at least, 
its own life, when bitten by the cobra or any other 



venomous serpent, and to hint that such a thing is open 
to a doubt would be an attempt to dispel, in too summary 
a manner, the long-cherished belief in such an accomplish- 
ment on the part of the ichneumon. The writer, how- 
ever, as a Practical Naturalist, accepts such, and all 
similar, statements with caution. Having had the oppor- 
tunity of submittiag. to frequent experiments several of 
these animals, I have arrived at the opposite conclusion, 
and am perfectly satisfied that the assertion that those 
animals have a knowledge of certain plants, capable of 
curing the bite, is entirely a fable, and is without the 
slightest foundation. A perfectly harmless snake of 
considerable size has been held in the hand, and the 
ichneumon driven into a corner of the room ; upon 
holding the snake with its head directed towards the 
ichneumon, the latter animal exhibited all the signs of 
the greatest fear and alarm, and rushed from the spot ; 
but no sooner was the snake allowed to crawl or glide 
away on the ground, than the ichneumon darted upon it 
and killed it without difficulty. When an ichneumon 
finds a snake, poisonous or otherwise, it endeavours to 
steal suddenly upon it, and, by seizing the snake by the 
back of the neck, to crush the first few vertebra with his 
sharp and powerful teeth, its bite being most determined 
and vicious. The spine of the serpent being thus injured, 
the creature is rendered powerless ; should the ichneumon 
in its first attempt fail, it will, with great caution, renew 
the attack, and in order to avoid being bitten will invari- 
ably try to rush upon the snake from behind. In such 
encounters the ichneumon does not always escape un- 
scathed, and, although wounded, is not necessarily 
poisoned; however, should the beast be inoculated with 
poison, it succumbs to its effects. The animal that is 
unable to distinguish a perfectly harmless snake from a 



poisonous one, we think would be at a loss to know how 
to doctor his wounds were they filled with poison as active 
and fatal as the poison of the cobra. It is probable that 
no living creature, the size of which does not render it 
impossible to be seized, is free or safe from its attack. 
It will, when other food is not at hand, take to the water 
like an otter, and swim about after fish. The slippery 
eel, which it kills in the same manner as it would a snake, 
is unable to elude its bloodthirsty intentions. 

In fighting with each other, the mode of attack is 
completely changed; the neck of the ichneumon being 
thick and almost invulnerable, they bite each other about 
the feet and legs, and most frequently terminate their 
battle by getting fast hold of the throat. They live in 
holes in the ground, among loose stones or rocks, in hollow 
trees or under the roots, in old drains or in any comfort- 
able hiding-place, their slender form enabling them to 
find their way into places so small, that it sometimes 
appears incredible that they could enter them. Their 
habits are both diurnal and nocturnal, according to cir- 
cumstances. They usually produce three or four at a 
birth : the young are helpless and blind for some days. 

The ichneumon is a dangerous animal to keep in a 
careless manner in the house, or in any other place, as 
should it by accident find itself at liberty, it will kill 
every living creature it can overpower. One kept as a 
pet by the writer escaped in the night from its cage, and 
cleared the poultry-house belonging to him by killing 
fifteen or sixteen valuable fowls through biting them on 
the back of the necks, and, no doubt, sucking a portion 
of blood from each of its victims. It is a well-known fact 
that a single animal will continue to hunt and kill, one 
after another, everything that it can find possessing life 
in the place, and in that way a very large number of its 


prey are killed and left without any of their flesh being 
eaten. In places infested by rats or other noxious 
creatures the value of these wholesale slaughterers must 
be inestimable ; for instance, on board ship, these animals 
would, but for the fear of their destroying the poultry 
stock, be invaluable. 

The species of Serpestes are very numerous both in 
Africa and India. Some are of large size, and are extremely 
active and quick-sighted, the eyes being remarkable, and 
resembling those of the cat and the fox in having the 
pupils vertical, and doubtless this structure of the eyes 
enables the animal to see well with the least possible 
quantity of light ; its nose, for it follows the scent like a 
dbg, greatly helps it to iind its food. It can discover the 
eggs of snakes and of other reptiles as well as those of 
birds, upon all of which it feeds voraciously. Should it 
find an egg too large and too hard for the teeth to break 
through, the animal will raise the egg with its front feet, 
and dash it upon the ground to break the shell. They 
are easily kept and fed upon bread-and-milk, raw or 
cooked meat, small birds, eggs, rats, mice, frogs, and, in 
fact, almost anything that usually comes to the table 
either of the Englishman or of the foreigner, and if allowed 
sufficient room and kept clean have no unpleasant odour. 




It is often remarked that there m Homething in a namt^ 
but if by the name of the above-nidiitioncid animal vvi! 
were to take it for granted that the food of the animal con- 
sisted of ants, and fetid him accordingly, I ihir no living 
.specimen would over macli Europe. Of the fivo or six 
specimens that have, J'roni tiirio to time, coriii! within my 
observations, as well aw th(! various means and kiiidH of 
food that have boon employed to Hustain thorn, I am Hatis- 
fied that the name, if intended to iiidioato tho food of this 
creature, is only a dolusion. 

Tho first great ant-eater that I rciiiiembor to havo soon 
alive came to England in 1853, This animal was iod jiriri- 
cipally upon raw eggs, milk, and the intestines of rabbits ; 
upon this food the aniinal lived for several irionths, but 
during tho whole of this Lime appeared unhealthy. 

In ISlii; a fine large adult ai]t-(!ator arrived in South- 
ampton and was allowed the free range of a larg(! kitcliori 
garden. Tho boast was amazingly strong, active, and 
somewhat dangerous, as he would Kornotimos suddenly 
attack and strike with his front claws any on<! who 
ventured to approach hinj. Being alone, J entenjd tho 
garden to look at him, and, not expecting any niiHchiol' I 
was much astonished by tho suddoriness of lii.s attack, and 
had to boat a retreat in double (juiok tinio to save my 
clothes and, probably, my skin irom being torn off. Ho 
fed freely upon thin worm-like strips of flesii (raw ])iiid'), 



with occasionally arrowroot, milk, and the yolk of ':^^;^, 
consuming about 21 oz. of food per day. This animal was 
afterwards sent to the Zoological Gardens in Hamburg, 
and livf;d a very long time on the food mentioned above. 

In 1867 a fine young female was presented to this 
Society by Dr. Palin, and on its arrival at the (Jardens 
was in rather poor condition, having been fed principally 

THE GliEAT A^'T-EAliiii. 

upon milk and eggs : but strips of raw beef and mutton, 
however, were substituted, and upon this food, with the 
addition of a little bread-and-mUk, the animal soon in- 
creased in size and strength in a very remarkable manner. 
Improbable as it may appear, I found this animal some- 
what partial to ripe fruit, particularly soft pears and 
apples, which she would eat with apparent relish if 



mashed up into pulp, and I have no doubt that she 
would have inserted her long snout into a ripe melon 
and eat out the contents. In fact, I very much doubt 
the statements, made by the early writers, of the habits 
and food of this singular animal, they being probably 
deceived or misled by the woodpecker-like tongue of this 
animal into the belief that it was intended for the capture 
of small insects. For my own part, I have tried them with 
the most tempting insect food at my command, namely, 
mealworms, and have failed to get these creatures to eat 
them, although the worm.s wore somotimes mixed with 
milk and honey. 

When the animal was scratching and burrowing in the 
earth I have seen him thrust his long nose suddenly into 
the ground and draw forth a worm which he would eat, 
but in no instance have I observed him allow his long and 
delicate tongue to hang out in the dirt or remain protruflod 
from his mouth for more than an instant, unless it was 
thrust into some sweet and glutinous fluid that he was 
engaged in licking up. 




The additions that are constantly made to the vast 
collection of animals in the Zoological Gardens furnish a 
good proof of the increasing efforts made by persons in 
various parts of the world to promote the success of the 
Society's undertakings. 

In many instances the Society owe to the energetic 
perseverance of their corresponding members and travelling 
friends the obtaining of species which are rare and difficult 
to keep. Another and very important matter to be taken 
into consideration is the kind assistance so freely rendered 
by most of the officers of the mail and other steamers, by 
whose aid many animals reach this country in so short a 
time that they arrive in perfect health ; whereas a long 
sea voyage will constantly render many animals weak and 
sickly, partly from want of proper food, and also the close 
confinement and neglect of cleanliness, consequent on 
being on board ship. 

It was with much pleasure I observed the arrival of a 
second aard-vark or ant-bear {Oryderopus capensis), and 
this time the animal's sex is of considerable importance, 
the former one being a male, this last individual an adult 
female. The novelty of the appearance of these singular- 
looking animals is well deserving of notice to show the 
progress made in the mode of feeding and treating rare 
and difficult-to-get animals, and bringing them home to 



this country in good health. To obtain these creatures 
in the first instance is a task of great difficulty, as they 
have to be dug out of the earth, and, in many instances, 
after many days' toil, the hunters fail to capture them un- 
injured, and frequently the dogs employed in the pursuit 
are killed, or so mutilated that the}'^ are obliged to be 
destroyed ; and it not unfrequently happens that after the 
animal is caught, it is so wild and ill-tempered, that it 
refuses all kind of food, and dies in a few days. The 
mode of attack is by striking with its fore-feet, the claws 
of which are long and powerful, with sharp cutting edges, 
and are capable of inflicting very dangerous wounds upon 
any animal within reach. The ant-bear, although a heavy 
animal, strong, and doubtless when enraged a very awkward 
customer for a dog or other enemy to attack, is a trifle 
when compared with the more powerful and active ant- 
eater of South America (Myrmecophaga jubata), whose 
enormous strength renders its attack so much to be feared 
by the Indian hunters, whose dogs are frequently killed 
by this beast. The determined courage displayed by this 
shaggy brute when it attacks a man or other animal has 
been more than once witnessed by the writer, who upon 
one occasion narrowly escaped being very severely handled 
by a full-grown adult male of this species. The mode of 
attack is by a sudden rush upon you ; his spiny hairs all 
erect, and the little fierce eyes protruding above his long 
and tapering snout, he utters at the same instant a loud, 
savage, and half choking, roaring bark, and strikes with 
wonderful swiftness at the object with his powerful fore- 
foot ; the strong hooked claws bringing the animal thus 
caught between his fore-legs, and instantly tearing open 
the abdomen or lower parts of the body with his incredibly 
sharp hooks, the points of which are so well preserved by 
never coming in contact with the ground while the animal 



is walking, in consequence of their being turned inwards 
and upwards. The strength, and so to speak the hardness 
of these and many other wild animals, and the little im- 
pression that a man can make upon them unless armed 
with some deadly weapon, is a thing few persons not ex- 
perienced in these facts can possibly credit or imagine. 
Their tenacity of life is often the cause of their suffering 
a frightful amount of torture from the savages who capture 
them, who sometimes mutilate them by cutting off their 
feet to disable them, and keep them alive for days in 
order to have them fresh for eating. 

These so-called ant-eaters are, however, not so in- 
sectivorous as they are generally supposed to be, as will 
be seen by the fact that the captive animals are fed upon 
raw meat, and of this each of them will consume about 
three pounds daily; the South African species not only 
eats raw flesh, but a small quantity of grain^ and this its 
remarkable molar teeth are well suited to grind on their 
flattened crowns. 


Having experienced the great difficulty of finding 
suitable food for the Edentata generally, I am able to 
state that, after many experiments, I have discovered the 
most appropriate food for the great ant-eater of South 
America, food upon which that animal has not only lived 
in perfect health, but has also increased in size in a very 
remarkable manner. This result induces me to believe 
and expect that a similar food and mode of treatment 
would be likely to meet with success in keeping the 
African species. I would therefore advise that this latter 
species be fed upon raw flesh (perfectly fresh); it is most 

177 N 


important that the animal from which the flesh is taken 
should have been recently killed. The flesh should be 
cut into long strips, about the size of a goose-quill, each 
bit being given or introduced by one end into the mouth, 
the other end being held in the hand. Another successful 
method is to mince the flesh in the same maimer as 
sausage-meat, and mix it with scalded bread -and-milk, to 
which may be added raw or boiled eggs ; only the yolks 
of the latter are to be used. 

I have heard, upon what I think good authority, that 
one of these animals lived three or four months in 
captivity upon the fresh blood of sheep and bullocks, with 
which was mixed a little fine oatmeal. It may, therefore, 
be possible, by varying the food with the above, and by 
the addition of a little honey and the entrails of poultry 
well washed and cut up, that the aard-vark may be kept 
alive. It is difiicult, at first, to get these animals to take 
to the artificial food, but with very great perseverance, a 
good supply of patience, and by thoughtful care, it is to 
be accomplished. 

But if the feeding be entrusted to servants, who seldom 
take much interest in such things, I fear the result would 
be, as heretofore, useless. 



The armadillos belong to a family of the Order Edentata. 
An exemplification of the difficulty experienced by the 
scientific zoologist, in finding a suitable nomenclature 
under which to arrange and classify the various orders of 
the animal kingdom, is aptly given in the Order Edentata 
(or toothless). For the largest species of armadillo 
{Dasypus gigas) is furnished with a larger number of 
teeth than any other quadruped (mammal), the teeth 
consisting of upwards of ninety molars. Notwithstanding 
this anomaly, a more convenient or less inconsistent place 
for arranging the genus Dasypus has not been found. 
Armadillos have the appearance, at first sight, of reptiles ; 
the horny skin, covered with bands and plates, strikes the 
observer as bearing a resemblance to lizards or crocodiles, 
but more particularly to tortoises ; and long since some of 
the ablest anatomists pointed out strong and well-marked 
characters of agreement in the structure of those distantly 
related forms. Notwithstanding the apparently close 
similitude in some of the structures, the idea that the 
affinity is very great cannot, for one moment, be enter- 
tained ; they may be nearer than the tortoise-shell cat to 
the tortoise. However many resemblances can be found, 
perhaps a large number of well-marked differences can be 
distinguished: the structure of the bones themselves, where 
a section is examined under the microscope, presents at 



once an unmistakable and well-defined diversity. The 
late Professor Quekett first pointed out the structure of 
the tissues of the bones of reptiles, as distinguished from 
these parts of birds and mammals, the warm blood. The 
mode of reproduction, and suckling the helpless and blind 
young, exhibit, in the armadillos, a wide contrast with the 
egg-laying, cold-blooded tortoises, whose young, like all 
other reptiles, are produced in a perfect condition, and are 
able to provide for themselves as soon as they are hatched. 
It would be useless to proceed calling attention to many 
other differences, for many missing links will have to be 
found and supplied ere the armadillos can be united to 
the tortoises. A little three-banded armadillo {Tolypcutes 
conurus) that was exhibited in the Zoological Gardens, 
was noticed to walk on the points of the long claws of its 
fore-feet, and that mode of progression suggested to the 
observer the probability that some of the monster eden- 
tate animals known only by their fossil remains, progressed 
in that manner instead of tree climbing, as they have been 
represented by their describers, who could not find the 
bones of the feet and toes suited to walking on the 
ground. The great ant-eater {Myrmecopha juhata), another 
of the Order Edentata, has the toes and claws of the front 
feet turned inwards and upwards, and thus walks on the 
outer side of the feet; it is most likely that had this 
animal been found in the state of, and known only as, a 
fossil, we should have regarded this formation of the feet 
as admirably adapted to climb trees, a habit up to the 
present time Unrecorded by personal observation of the 
living creature, although in the British Museum we have 
a familiar example of that supposed accomplishment in 
the Monster Megatherium, a far less likely beast to ascend 
the trees of the period than the great ant-eater of our 



Armadillos are in great request with the itinerant 
showmen, who announce the animal as the " Wonderful 
Hog in Armour ; " of course the picture outside the show 
rather flatters the animal in. size, and occasionally quite 
equals the fe.mous glyptodon, which, according to Professor 
Owen, rivalled the rhiaoceros in dimensions. 

Armadillos are said (in almost every book that has been 
published) to feed upon roots, fruit, and other vegetable 
substances; our experience, however, has proved that 
these animals are feeders upon animal substances, if not 
entirely so, to a great extent. One fact at least would 
lead to this conclusion, they have become amazingly 
abundant in the neighbourhood of the slaughtering places 
of South America, feeding on the offal caused by killing 
a large quantity of cattle, and their vast numbers iucline 
one to believe that this food is well suited to them. In 
captivity they feed freely on animal food, such as flesh, 
worms, or insects, small birds, eggs, lizards, and snakes, 
rejecting fruit and vegetable substances. 

They burrow into the earth with wonderful swiftness, 
and most frequently under the roots of trees, rendering it 
most difficult to dig them out. Their movements on the 
surface of the ground are quick and lively, and generally 
at twilight, being nocturnal rather than diurnal in their 
habits. They produce two at a birth, which are at that 
time helpless and blind, and are suckled for some time. 

Armadillos are amazingly strong and muscular, con- 
sequently, taking size into account, they are of great 
weight. The flesh is much sought after, and considered 
delicious eating. 



The old reptile house became unfit for the safe keeping 
of the lizards, venomous snakes and other reptiles that 
were deposited therein. It is very fortunate that no 
serious accidents occurred by reason of some of them 
having made their escape. The practice of feeding some 
of the snakes upon tame white mice was looked upon by 
many of the lady and children visitors as cruel. When I 
was spoken to, and written to, on the subject I took 
adv.antage of a suggestion that the common brown mouse, 
of which we had more than enough, would answer for 
feeding purposes quite as well as white ones. I therefore 
had mouse-traps set in all directions, and supplied the 
wild instead of the tame white ones. 

I soon discovered my mistake. These wild brown mice, 
if not killed directly, were soon engaged in gnawing their 
way out of the case, and the same opening which they 
made also allowed some of the snakes to follow. The 
tame white mice seldom or never attempt to gnaw their 
way out. Years after the old reptile house had been 
disused, harmless snakes that had escaped in this way 
were found in the mill-room underneath the old house. 
They had doubtless lived upon the rats and mice that 
swarmed in this place. 

The keeper of the reptile house came to me one day 
and told me that he had missed one of the cobras. I 
examined the empty cobra case, and found a mouse-hole 



in the corner leading into the water-viper's case. The 
water-viper appeared to have lately fed and to be well 
filled out, and I had some misgivings that the lost cobra, 
in creeping through the mouse-hole, had been caught and 
swallowed by the water-viper. 

The fear, coupled with the anxiety of thinking that so 
dangerous a serpent as a cobra was at liberty, caused me 
to determine to settle the question at once. I had the 
water- viper killed, and, upon examination, found the nearly 
digested cobra, which was a great relief to me and all the 




I REMEMBER reading some time since an account of the 
water-carrying tortoises, a specimen of which was ex- 
hibited at the San Francisco Academy of Sciences. 
" This tortoise is a native of the arid regions of California 
and Arizona. On one being dissected it was found that 
it carried on each side a membrane, attached to the 
inner portion of the shell, in which was about a pint 
of clear water, the whole amount being about a quart. 
Professor Cox was of opinion that the water was derived 
from the secretions of the giant barrel cactus on which 
the tortoise feeds. This cactus contains a great deal 
of water. The tortoise is found in sections of the country 
where there is no water, and where there is no vegetation 
except the cactus. A traveller, suffering from thirst, 
could, in an emergency, supply himself with water by 
killing a tortoise. These tortoises are oftentimes at- 
tacked by foes both for their water and for their flesh. 
It was generally admitted that it would be useful if the 
habits and peculiarities of these animals coUld be noted, 
and some trustworthy information, as to how they collect 
and secrete the water, obtained." 

During the last thirty years I have had the opportunity 
of dissecting, I may say, hundreds of tortoises, and, upon 
opening the body, the commonest condition most fre- 



quently found was the enormous accumulation of fluid. 
The animals apparently had dropsy, from the flaccid and 
soft condition of the flesh and the filling up the whole 
of the body with water; in fact, they all appeared to 
have been in a dropsical condition, which was the cause 
of death. 


The tortoise is as little known, understood, and cared 
for as most of the reptile tribe. Quiet and harmless, un- 
suspected of having evil propensities, and not being feared 
in the least, they pass slowly on their way, without 
creating much interest, or attracting much attention. 
They are, nevertheless, of much importance as an article 
of food, and are much sought for, more especially the 
kinds that are aquatic, by the natives of the countries 
which they inhabit. The eggs of tortoises, both land and 
water, are collected and sold in enormous quantities 
during the breeding season. The eggs of tortoises hatch 
without the aid or assistance of the parents, who deposit 
them in situations best suited to their development ; the 
young ones have therefore to look out for themselves. 
They sometimes, however, hatch under very different con- 
ditions, as the following incident will show : — An officer 
who was engaged in the Russian war, while in the Crimea, 
found some small, round, white eggs ; not knowing the 
animal that had laid them, he carefully packed them in 
his pistol case wrapped in wool. Judge his surprise, on 
unpacking them in England, to find his pistol case con- 
tained several living water tortoises that had hatched out 
during the time he had been travelling home. These 
animals, of which there are many genera and various 
forms, differ in habits, food, and mode of life. 



The food of the land tortoises consists, principally, of 
vegetable substances, leaves of plants, fallen and decayed 
fruit, and fungi of various kinds. 

' Many of the water tortoises feed upon dead fish, insects, 
or other animal matter. Some of them, however, are 
vegetable feeders, while others there are that feed partly 
upon vegetable and partly upon animal substances. 

Slow as the movements of tortoises generally appear, 
the species that live upon animal substances, and have to 
capture their prey, are quick enough, when so engaged. 
The snapping turtle, so called, is well known, and is much, 
to be feared in the localities in which it abounds. Many 
of the smaller kinds of water tortoises are expert fly- 
catchers ; swimming about close to the surface of the 
water, they capture, by suddenly darting forth the head, 
assisted by the long neck, any insect or other living 
creature within reach, with amazing rapidity ; the flattened 
feet give them great swimming power, by the aid of 
which they move about in any direction with ease and 

The tortoise is about the last creature we should have 
suspected capable of, or have charged with, a display of 
anger, or of possessing a pugnacious disposition, yet, we 
learn, upon undoubted authority, that battles among them, 
in their native haunts, are not uncommon ; they meet and 
fight by biting and butting at each other like rams, 
backing a short distance to give greater force to the blows. 
These fights, like some of the other proceedings of the 
tortoises, are of considerable duration, frequently lasting 
all day. They seldom appear much the worse after an 
encounter, still it shows a determination on the part of 
these cold-blooded animals to resent a possible injury or 
offence, or probably to drive off an intruder upon their 
domestic felicity. 



The age to which they are said to live is probably 
merely fabulous. It is, however, certain that they grow 
slowly, and that they attain a good old age. Some species 
are of immense size. The measured length of the outer 
shell of a large Indian tortoise (T. elephantina) was found 
to be 4 ft. 3 in., the circumference 6 ft. 6 in. This 
animal is said to have weighed 400 lbs., and as the ap- 
pearance of many animals that grow to a large size lead 
us to regard them as being very old, we are induced 
to place faith in their antiquity. However, be that as 
it may, it is not many years since it was generally 
believed that the rhinoceros required fifty years to com- 
plete its growth, and would then live till it was up- 
wards of two hundred years old. We now know that 
those accounts were fables, as the rhinoceros is fully 
grown at the age of eight or ten years, and that it 
most probably dies of old age before it has seen forty 

Large numbers of the common tortoise (Testudo grceca) 
are brought to London, and are offered for sale about the 
streets by the costermongers ; the price varies from four 
pence to two shillings each. It is great fun to witness 
the artful dodges practised by such dealers in well-known, 
but little understood, animals ; the strange questions of 
the buyers, and the quaint answers of the vendors, are as 
remarkable as they are suited to the occasion. " What 
are they good for ? " asks an old lady. " What do you 
want it to do, marm ? " " Well, my kitchen swarms with 
black beetles." " Ah ! " says the costermonger, " they are 
dead nuts on black beetles." The tortoise is forthwith paid 
for and carried off. The next customer is induced to become 
a purchaser on being assured of the skill of the animal in 
catching mice, etc. etc., or, should the slightest hint be 
given of a garden, you are gratuitously informed that 



" the tortoise lives upon snails, slugs, and every other kind 
of varmint." 

In hot climates the tortoises do not hibernate or become 
torpid, but continue to move about, and feed at all seasons. 
This refers not only to those that pass their lives on 
land, but also to those that live in the water. In tem- 
perate or cold climates, however, the latter leave the 
water in winter, and retire into holes in the banks or 
sheltered damp places during the cold season, while 
the former dig holes in the dry bank or earth, and bury 
themselves sufficiently deep in the ground or under 
decayed leaves, etc., in order to escape the cold. 

As an instance of the torpidity of these animals we may 
quote the following fact, viz. : — The curator of a well- 
known museum of Natural History was sitting one night 
quietly and snugly in his chair in the fond delusion that 
the only living creature in the place was himself, when he 
was suddenly startled from his reverie by the smashing of 
glass and a loud noise at the far end of the museum ; he 
started to his feet, and, with lamp in hand, rushed to the 
spot whence proceeded the noise, when his consternation 
increased on observing some of the newly varnished and 
labelled specimens of tortoises quitting the shelves and 
rolling about in strange confusion. The innocent cause of 
this commotion turned out to be one of the recently-added 
specimens, which was picked up in a room below as dead, 
and dried, and was varnished and labelled and placed with 
the others. It was, at the time of being placed in the 
case, only in a state of torpor, from which the warmth of 
the room roused it, and realizing at once the solemnity of 
its position in being placed in the row with its defunct 
relatives, it commenced to travel, tumbling ofif the shelf, as 
it went on, all the empty and untenanted shells of departed 
tortoises in its way, much to the alarm of our friend. 



My fair readers may be interested to know what kind 
of animal supplies the material for the beautiful combs 
and other ornaments formed of tortoise-shell. The tortoise^ 
shell of commerce is produced by a large marine species 
known to naturalists as the Chelone imbricata. The cap- 
ture of this animal and of other marine species by the 
use of the sucking fish (Ucheneis) has been well described 
by several well-known travellers. It may, however, be of 
interest to some of my readers to learn by what contrivance 
fishes can be employed to capture animals that do not 
feed upon fish. 

The mode of proceeding is easily understood by any 
one having a knowledge of the power possessed by the 
sucking-fish of attaching itself to other bodies. These 
fish are kept in tubs and tanks ready for use, and the 
fishermen upon seeing the turtles floating asleep at a dis- 
tance, attach a line to the sucking-fish, the sucker of 
which is on the top of the head. This done, the fish is 
allowed to swim to the turtles, and it quietly fixes itself 
by its sucking disc upon the unsuspecting turtle so 
tightly that the turtle is drawn towards the boat and 
easily taken. 

The flesh of turtles and of most tortoises forms a very 
excellent and highly nutritious food, and is much valued 
and sought after by our wealthy citizens. It nevertheless 
soon becomes distasteful to the Englishman's palate, that 
is, supposing him to be placed from home and in the 
country in which turtle in high perfection could be had, 
and no other food available. He is then, generally, soon 
reduced to the condition of the confectioner's apprentice, 
who after the first year could not be persuaded to taste 
anything that was sweet. 

Having sent to Dr. Giinther some living water tortoises 
for identification, the porter to whom they were entrusted 



(to keep them in safety) placed them in a glass jar for 
the night. The curator on the following morning finding 
them, in his room, and not knowing they were alive, filled 
up the jar with spirits ; he was startled, as also were these 
unlucky dwellers in water, who, for the advancement of 
science, unfortunately lost their lives by imbibing too 
large a quantity of alcohol. 


Missing Page 


These reptiles are remarkable for their great number of 
species and variety of forms, differing much in habits and 
food, and being widely distributed. Many of them are of 
great beauty, both in form and colour ; the Lacerta viridis, 
common green lizard, may be quoted as an example of fine 
form and brilliant colour ; and, on the other hand, we have 
the most repulsive-looking creature in the spiny species 
known as the Moloch horridus ; a more hideous creature 
cannot well be imagined. Many singular peculiarities 
appertain to the lizard family, some of them being desti- 
tute of the external limbs, such as the slow-worms and the 
grass snakes. 

The brittleness of the tails of many species and the 
parts that have been broken off being replaced by a new 
growth, are very remarkable. 

The tail is used by the monitors and others in defend- 
ing themselves against, and in trying to escape from, their 
enemies, and a most severe weapon it proves to be ; the 
strength and power put forth in giving a blow, or rather 
in slashing or lashing from side to side, or upwards, with 
this whip-like appendage would astonish any one who 
incautiously attempted to handle one of these animals in 
full activity. 

The wonderful rapidity with which they move sur- 
passes all belief, and only those who have witnessed 
their lightning-like disappearance from sight upon 
being surprised, can realize the quickness of their move- 

It must be impressed upon the mind that the tempera- 
ture and state of the atmosphere exert great influence over 
these animals. A lizard that could rush before you, and 
vanish like a flash of light, in the heat of the sun's rays, 
would lie apparently lifeless during the cold of the night ; 
heat is life, cold is death, to the lizard tribe. The state 



and condition of the animal itself has also much to do with 
its liveliness. 

Some of the species are of small size, never exceeding 
3 in. or 4 in. in length ; but the larger kinds are said to 
attain from 6 ft. to 7 ft. in length. Their mode of repro- 
duction is various ; many kinds produce the young alive, 
others deposit their eggs in a warm situation, and leave 
them to hatch out and provide for themselves. 

The larger species, such as the monitors of Africa 
and Australia, feed upon animal food, and their swift- 
ness in moving enables them to capture birds as well as 
mammals ; they are as active in the trees as on the 
ground, and they devour large numbers of eggs and of 
young birds. 

When one of these lizards finds a nest of eggs the skil- 
ful method it has of taking up an egg in its mouth is 
remarkable. The creature turns its nose upwards, before 
crushing the shell, in order that the contents may flow 
down its throat ; or should the egg contain a nearly 
hatched young one, the blood and other fluids are swal- 
lowed with the crushed shell and chick ; the long forked 
tongue being thrust far out of the reptile's mouth, licking 
up on all sides with great relish any particle that may 
have escaped at the sides of its mouth. 

Should a rat or other small mammal fall in its way, 
the monitor at once seizes it, and like a rat-killing dog, 
shakes and knocks it about on the ground until it is 
stunned or killed, and then swallows it whole, some- 
times using its claws to free the sides of the mouth from 
the claws or toes of the victim should they become, as 
they sometimes do, fixed in that part. The power in the 
jaws exerted by these animals is incredible, when crush- 
ing the ribs and other bones of the animals upon which 
they feed, and the determined manner with which they 

193 o 


hold on can only be imagined. On one occasion the 
writer witnessed two large Egyptian monitors pounce 
upon a snake of about 15 in. in length ; both appeared 
hungry and equally determined to make a meal of the 
unlucky snake. They snatched, or rather jerked, at each 
other, keeping tight hold of their victim, one having 
the head, the other the tail ; by a number of convulsive 
efforts each managed to swallow about half the snake, 
until the noses of the monitors came in contact, when 
suddenly the one that had the head part of the snake 
down his throat, managed also to get the nose of his 
antagonist firmly between his jaws ; then a most desperate 
struggle ensued which lasted several seconds, and ended 
by the tail end of the snake being relinquished. It is need- 
less to add that the whole of the snake was instantly 
swallowed by the successful monitor. 

An adventure once happened to myself while travelling. 
I had with me a small box filled with geckos, a very 
harmless little reptile, and during my temporary absence 
from the hotel an inquisitive servant opened the box, and 
being too much alarmed at the sight and the quickness 
of the reptiles to close the box, rushed out of the room. 
The animals, finding themselves at liberty, began very 
soon to run up the walls of the staircase, to the great 
alarm, horror, and consternation of every one in the hotel, 
who believed them to be dreadfully venomous. My 
astonishment may be imagined on returning, late at 
night, to find everybody sitting up for me, and giving 
me a very warm reception. No one had dared to 
venture up-stairs, the foot of which was guarded by a 
posse of frightened servants armed with pokers and tongs 
for fear any of the reptiles should escape to the lower part 
of the hotel. Had it not been that my. services were 
most urgently required to collect the active little brutes, 



there was every possibility of my company being most 
unceremoniously dispensed with by the enraged tenants 
of the hotel. The entomologist unused to collecting in 
countries that abound with these active little animals, 
is sometimes treated to a sight the reverse of pleasing ; 
on his returning to the tray or board that he has for a 
short time left filled with beautiful butterflies, all pimied 
out to dry, he finds only the pins, the lizards having 
eaten up the already captured iasects. 

The power possessed by many lizards of changing 
colour, particularly by the iguanas, that pass much of 
their time in trees, is only known to those who have 
made these animals a study; they do not vary their 
colour perhaps so much as the well-known chameleon, 
but the change from the most lovely bright green to 
the dull wood-brown, is of frequent and almost constant 
occurrence, depending probably upon the altered situation 
from the green leaves to the branches or trunk of the 
trees upon which they feed. The large lizards, called 
iguanas, of South America, feed principally upon fruits 
and vegetable substances. They occasionally do much 
damage to the plantations, and are particularly fond of 
the kitchen-garden, committing great havoc among the 
much-prized vegetables grown for the table. In some 
instances during their visits they have so completely 
eaten up every particle of green food, that what appeared 
the day before a well-stocked garden, looks the next like 
a scrubby stubble field, every vestige of the green growing 
crop having been eaten by the iguanas. These animals, 
however, are much sought for as an article of food, and in 
their turn repay for the damage they occasionally commit. 
Their flesh, excellent in flavour, highly nutritious and 
wholesome, is cooked in various ways, being either broiled, 
boiled, roasted, or made into soup. 



To speak of the chameleon is to speak upon a subject 
somewhat analogous to the conjurer's inexhaustible bottle ; 
the more it is handled the more there is to gain from it. 
There is so much connected with these animals not 
generally known, and they are brought to this country so 
frequently, and kept sometimes as " pets," but ofbener on 
account of their remarkable form and singular habits, that 
a few remarks upon them may not be without interest to 
those persons who possess specimens, in enabling them to 
preserve them alive, and by so doing to become acquainted 
with their habits and economy. 

The cause of change of colour in the chameleon appears 
to be imperfectly understood, although so much has been 
written upon this subject. Many other animals exhibit 
the same power, but to a more limited extent. It is 
highly probable that the change may be partly involuntary, 
because some fishes, reptiles, and insects, if removed from 
one situation in which their colours assimilate to the sur- 
rounding objects, to another to which they at first form a 
strong contrast, they will in a very short space of time 
adapt their colours to that of the new position, this change 
affording probably " a protection from their enemies." 
This object of the change of colour may be questioned in 
regard to the chameleon, as that reptile may be free from 
enemies. Again, the power of assimilating its colour to 



the branches or leaves of trees and shrubs may be useful 
in another way — viz. to prevent the flies or other insects 
seeing the danger to which they are exposed in approach- 
ing within reach of its treacherous and sticky tongue. As 
the chameleon cannot follow its prey, it has to wait until 
it comes so near that the tongue will reach it, and every- 
thing that would aid in accomplishing this act is fully in 
accordance with all we know respecting the means pos- 
sessed by other animals in obtaining food ; and the question 
of the usefulness of the change of colour will perhaps for 
ever remain beyond our understanding, like the mode 
itself of changing colour. Many striking instances of 
insects assuming the colour of the situation in which they 
fix themselves in the chrysalis state have been brought to 
notice, they becoming white, red, black, or green, accord- 
ing to their position during their torpid condition. Some 
butterflies and moths have the form and colour of dead 
leaves. The latter are sometimes coloured and marked 
like the bark of trees on which they are found. Some 
caterpillars and insects are in the shape of bits of dead 
stick. All these and other modes of disguise given to 
various classes of animals are no doubt wisely ordained to 
serve a designed end ; so wonderful and perfect do they 
appear that they are beyond human comprehension. The 
change of colour in frogs, especially the " little green tree- 
frog," is very noticeable, varying from the most brilliant 
apple-green to nearly jet-black. Toads, and many of the 
lizards, particularly the iguanas of tropical America, are 
all changeable. The latter animals are perhaps quite equal 
to the chameleon in the power of changing colour, but 
they have not received the same amount of notice or 
attention; the variation being chiefly from the most 
beautiful bright green to a dull, pale brown, both colours 
well adapted to enable the animal to escape unobserved in 



the green foliage or on the brown trunks or stems of the 
trees on which it often remains motionless and unseen, so 
completely disguised is it by its assumed colour. The 
food of the chameleon consists of insects, such as beetles, 
flies, and caterpillars, in fact almost any small living 
creature. The mode of feeding, which is by darting forth 
with the rapidity of lightning its long tongue, is so well 
known that it is only in passing we mention it, but it 
would be well to say something about the means of 
keeping in our climate the animal during the winter 

The reptile requires to be kept in a warm place, and 
exposed as much as possible to the sun's rays. The food 
may consist of common black beetles, so troublesome in 
kitchens, which can be obtained by using the ordinary 
beetle-trap by which they are caught alive, and make a 
capital meal. A few gentles, which can always be obtained 
from the fishing-tackle makers, and which, placed in a small 
dish of sand in the glass case, soon hatch out from the 
warmth of the room, and produce a good stock of flies. 
In winter, in the event of these methods failing, the well- 
known mealworms can be obtained all the year round, and 
these, put into a glass or well-glazed saucer, will be taken 
by the chameleon. 

A little sugar-and- water in a dish is also desirable, as it 
frequently drinks or thrusts its tongue into the fluid, and 
seems to like it. Another disputed point has been argued 
with considerable warmth in reference to the mode of 
reproduction ; some said that the chameleon lays eggs, 
which are afterwards hatched, while others declared most 
positively that they produce their young alive ; thus, as 
in the old fable, the controversy became hot, and was 
carried on until the patience of all parties was exhausted. 
In truth, they were both, at one and the same time, quite 



right and quite wrong — for this simple reason, that the 
chameleon sometimes lays eggs that are afterwards 
hatched, while at others the eggs are hatched before 
they are laid, and consequently the young are produced 
or bom alive. 



Strange as it may appear, it is nevertheless true that 
a gourmand of a frog may sometimes have the opportunity 
of enjoying an expensive meal at the cost of the lives of his 
friends and near relations. In illustration of this I will 
give an instance. An American frog dined at the expense 
of the writer, who had to pay in money, while the near 
relations, cousias I may call them, of Mr. Frog, paid dearly 
by losing their lives upon the occasion. 

In England and on the Continent a dinner for one, not 
including wine, etc., should not exceed five or six shillings, 
but the idea of food costing this sum being swallowed, at a 
single repast, by an epicurean frog, seems quite out of all 

The facts on this occasion were as follows : — Having 
purchased about a dozen of the pretty fire-bellied toads 
(Bombinator igneus) from Saxony at a shilling each, I 
had them placed in a large glass case in which a happy 
family of frogs, etc., were supposed to be enjoying each 
other's society. This state of bliss, however, was not to 
be shared by my Saxon friends, for whom the American 
frog {Rana cateshiana) exhibited a great fondness, dis- 
tending its jaws, — which reminded me of the not un- 
frequent expression of kind mothers who say to the baby, 
" I could eat you, you darling," but, with this difference, 
our Yankee frog commenced immediately to swallow, " all 



alive and kicking," the unfortunate Saxony toads, and 
had actually polished off at least six of them before the 
discovery of this gluttony on his part was made. How 
many, considering their small size, he could have managed 
still remains unknown. The Yankee frog appeared 
like a Danda among the toads, and doubtless would 
have finished the dozen withoutTdifficulty, like oysters, 
had they not been rescued from the neighbourhood of his 
capacious jaws. 



An unfortunate shipwrecked sailor cast on shore upon 
the coast of Africa, and surrounded by a crowd of negroes, 
would not be able to distinguish or see the slightest differ- 
ence (except sex) among these naked black people ; they 
would all appear to him alike, thick-lipped, woolly-headed, 
and black — Sambo, Congo, and Jumbo " berry much alike, 
specially Jumbo." It would not, however, be long, should 
he remain among these people, before he would be able 
to recognize the different individuals, and the marked 
similarity that at first struck him would soon disappear, 
and Sambo would appear totally distinct from Congo and 
the rest, not only in his appearance, but in disposition, 
manners, etc. Much in the same way, if we meet a flock 
of sheep of any particular breed they appear as alike as 
possible at first sight ; but upon careful examination they 
will be found to present well-marked and endless differ- 
ences, even to an ordinary observer ; but ask the shepherd 
who has had the rearing and attending to the flock, he 
knows every sheep, and can distinguish them perhaps as 
readily as the huntsman can name every hound in his 

Now a pack of hounds to the stranger appears so much 
of the same size, colour, and form, that persons un- 



acquainted with the subject would doubt the possibility 
of each one being readily distinguished and called by 
name at sight ; yet such is the fact, and it only requires 
a little care and attention to notice not only peculiarities 
in features, but marked differences in habits, disposition, 
temper, and mode of action. How many thoroughbred 
and carefully reared and trained hounds are found to 
skulk and avoid the hard work of the chase, and look out 
for the most favourable opportunity of sneaking out of 
sight, and a hundred other tricks and dodges resorted to 
by cunning dogs, both old and young. It may be said 
that the dog and the sheep being domesticated animals, 
it is unfair to introduce them to illustrate a subject that 
is more strictly intended to show the individual differences 
that exist among wild species of animals. This must be 
admitted to be so far true, and the only object of their 
introduction is to point out that in the animals of pure 
breed, and consequently as much alike in appearance as 
wild animals, when closely examined are found to exhibit 
marks of distinction, not so easily observable on account 
of the difficulty of the examination of wild animals, and 
not because they do not exist. As an example, we may 
say, for instance, if the living lions to be found in the 
numerous menageries and Zoological Gardens in Europe 
had their portraits painted, these monarchs of the forest 
(as they are commonly called) would be found to differ 
in features and expression quite as much as the emperors, 
kings, and other rulers of this our savage world. 

But to return more closely to the subject under con- 
sideration, let us take the various kinds of wild birds that 
are reared by hand from the nest ; it would be natural 
to expect that the five or six young birds hatched from 
the same parents and fed at the same time, and upon the 
same food, treated alike, and kept together under the 



same circumstances, would grow up alike, or nearly so. 
Ask any one who has had years of experience in this 
matter ; the answer will be, almost without exception, that 
the greatest difference of disposition, temper, and ability 
will occur. Some become wild and useless, others alto- 
gether the reverse, perfectly gentle and attentive, and 
capable of being taught a variety of tunes and other 
accomplishments. These remarks apply particularly to 
song birds, but among other kinds of birds and beasts 
they are equally applicable. 

This, it will be observed, is the result of rearing birds 
upon unnatural food, and under unnatural circumstances 
and , conditions ; let us see what happens to the wild 
caught birds. We will take the well-known and charming 
songster the Nightingale, large numbers of which arrive 
in this country in the early part of April, and are easily 
caught. The differences observable among these fresh 
caught birds are most extraordinary. As a rule they are 
placed singly — each bird in a small cage — with the front 
with thin paper or white calico outside the wire bars. 
This is done to prevent their being alarmed or disturbed 
by any one looking at them or going near the cage. They 
are, of course, supplied with plenty of food and water. 

As the male birds arrive some days earlier than the 
females those caught as soon as they arrive are much 
higher in value on account of their song. And under the 
treatment before mentioned many begin to sing a day or 
two after they are captured ; this is by no means, however, 
constant, for, in spite of every care and precaution, they 
will sometimes exhibit a restless determination to escape 
from captivity, beating and dashing about in the cage 
night and day, knocking the feathers off the head and 
face by incessantly thrusting the bill between the wires 
of the cage, breaking and destroying every feather in its 



wings and tail by fluttering and jumping about, almost 
living without food, or throwing the food about on the 
bottom of its cage, such determined resistance does this 
little bird sometimes display to being kept a prisoner ; yet, 
on the other hand, we find other individuals of the same 
species, caught on the same day, in the same locality and 
under the same circumstances, and treated alike in every 
particular, exhibit a mild and gentle disposition, take 
readily to the food offered, soon become perfectly tame, 
come on the hand without fear, and sing night and day 
for many weeks. Such are the well-known facts to all 
persons who have taken the pains and trouble to keep 
in a state of captivity this much-admired and well-known 

A remarkable and strikingly illustrative example of 
this kind is well known to the writer. With reference to 
the wonderful performing monkeys so frequently exhibited 
in the streets of London and elsewhere, few persons are 
at all aware that the men who exhibit these intelligent 
and well-trained animals have had nothing whatever to 
do with their first teaching. The fact is that the teaching 
of performing monkeys is a profession, and the persons 
most skilful in the art have a school for the training and 
teaching the various kinds of performance these animals 
are intended to go through in after life. 

The secrets and mysteries of this profession are most 
carefully guarded, for the business is one of great profit, 
for a monkey whose value when untaught is but a few 
shillings, when properly trained and well educated, will sell 
readily for £50. 

It is a well-known fact that many monkeys are incapable 
of being taught, and it not unfrequently happens that 
the teachers, after having purchased a stock of young 
monkeys on their arrival in this country, soon discover 



the mental inferiority of some of them, and will sell them 
at once if possible, or exchange them away, at half their 
original cost, not wishing to lose time or take any further 
trouble with these dull or wilfully determined and obsti- 
nate individuals. It would fill a volume to relate the 
queer and funny artful dodges used by the teachers and 
their pupils, in the school for monkeys ; but it would be 
a breach of confidence to do more than state as a fact 
the existence of such establishments in this country. 

Now this illustration of individual peculiarity can, and 
may, fairly be applied to all animals that have the power 
of showing or displaying their will, temper, or disposition, 
or whatever power we may please to call it. It would be 
endless to attempt to multiply instances of this resistance, 
or otherwise, so constantly met with in the endeavours to 
convert to our use the powers of the lower animals. How 
often we fail to reduce to subjection many of the wild 
caught animals, who die rather than submit to a treat- 
ment that succeeds to perfection with others of the same 
kind ; we are therefore unable to deny their individuality. 
If it were not for this, probably many of the adventurous 
of a species would not shift their native homes and become 
like ourselves wandering migrants, seeking new homes, 
new food and circumstances ; and in this way, the will 
and disposition already changed may lead to other changes, 
both in size, form, and colour. The endless differences 
we find in nearly-allied creatures have been used most 
freely to multiply the number of species in all our Natural 
Histories. Many of these may perhaps, in after time, be 
found to be the changes only resulting and arising out 
of the conditions that have produced them. Progressing 
in discovery, each little fact brings forth new ideas, and 
opens up a fresh field of thought. Whoever dreamed one 
hundred years ago of seeing such a marvellous display of 



skill and care to bring before the world the true and 
faithful representations of the nervous, digestive, and 
other organs of the common blow-fly ? Why can this 
humble individual require to be so well furnished with 
these structures, at one time thought to belong only to 
creatures of a much higher order ? Have we not been 
shown that this little fly has a brain and nervous system 
most complete and perfect in its way ? Has, then, the 
smallest fly this same kind of organization, and which we 
have not yet made microscopes sufficiently perfect to dis- 
cover? Few persons would be able to distinguish one 
flea from another, but the proprietor of the exhibition of 
the " industrious fleas '' knew each individual perfectly, 
and called them by different names, alleging also that 
the fleas differed much in disposition and temper, a fact 
that those who have had the experience of meeting large 
numbers of them will not doubt. 



In reading the endless accounts given by sportsmen of 
their successes and failures in hunting wild animals, it is 
often a matter of surprise that a powerful animal should 
drop dead on receiving the first bullet; it also seems 
absurd to read of an enormous expenditure of ammunition 
without any fatal consequences. It is not difficult to 
understand the cause of these different results, if we con- 
sider how frequently the bull's-eye is missed by a very 
good shot, although he takes a deliberate aim at an im- 
movable target. In shooting wild animals no dependence 
can be placed upon the movements of the beast, no time 
must be lost, and what may be termed the bull's-eye in 
the animal is concealed inside the body. It becomes a 
matter of chance that the exact vital spot is hit, therefore 
it is only by a lucky accident should the animal fall to the 
first bullet. Of course much depends upon the knowledge 
and skill of the sportsman who knows the most vulnerable 
part, hence we find a powerful beast sometimes killed by 
a single shot, while, on the other hand, an equally fine 
animal is riddled with bullets without being at once dis- 
abled ; although it generally gets away and most assuredly 
dies a lingering and miserable death. 

I give here an illustration of how a round hole can 



be cut out of the hide of an animal, by making a long 
incision and rendering this of an oblong shape ; the skin 


can be sewn up, leaving on the outer surface a slight trace 
of a long cut, only the hole being completely done away 
with. There are also other means of hiding damages. 



If a collection could be made of the thousands of 
accounts that have been written and published in 
which animals have been described as exhibiting undeni- 
able proof of sound and good reason, there would still 
remain in the minds of a very large number of persons a 
grave doubt as to the veracity or accuracy of the observers 
and writers of these statements. It is a natural conse- 
quence for persons fond of animals, and who keep pets, to 
attribute to them an amount of intelligence which no 
other person would be able to discover in them. It, there- 
fore, appears to me to be simply a matter of individual 
opinion in all cases of the kind, and there remains, according 
to my idea, only those persons who are well acquainted 
with animals, and who have many opportunities of arriving 
at a correct decision, that are in a position to offer a fair 
and impartial judgment upon the subject. The numerous 
instances which have come under my observation during 
my long acquaintance and constant attention to the wants 
and habits of animals, have enabled me to satisfy myself 
beyond all doubt, that nearly all animals possess the power 
of reasoning, such power differing in degree from man 
until, in the lower forms of animal life, no vestige can 
possibly be traced. 

There can be no doubt that in those animals immediately 
associated with man, observing Ms habits and reguirements, 



this poiver becomes developed in a much greater degree than 
it does in those animals which are in a wild state ; at least 
when they are kept in captivity, or in a domesticated 
condition, we have a much better opportunity of observ- 
ing and judging whether they possess the faculty of 
reason, hence the endless anecdotes and stories told 
about them. 



DuEiNG the time I spent in travelling in Norway I 
was much struck by the remarkable fact that a very large 
number of the ponies were of a dun colour, exhibiting 
striped markings about the legs, very similar to the 
markings on the legs of zebras. This was most con- 
spicuous in the infant or foal state. Not only were their 
legs so striped and marked, but most of them showed a 
dark line down the centre of the back ; many of them had 
also shoulder stripes, like donkeys. I have counted on 
some individuals as many as three of these shoulder 
stripes. In the common ass these stripes upon the legs 
are not unfrequent. My idea, for many years, has been that 
the origin of our domestic horse must have been by the 
commingling of some striped animal of the equine form, 
and that the race of ponies in Norway is of very ancient 
breed, in which the tracing of the origin has not died out. 

Until of late years horses were not usually imported into 

Travelling in that country is safer and easier with the 
native ponies than with larger and more powerful animals. 
I can only say that the ponies and the people are to be 
admired for their gentleness and good behaviour. A whip 
or stick is not necessary, and is not allowed to be used by 
the owners of these ponies. These creatures are so tame 
that the children almost as soon as they can run fondle 



them and crawl about under their bellies. In travelling 
through Norway the pony is changed about every eight 
miles at a farm-house, where an entry is made in a book 
kept for the purpose of reference. The traveller's name is 
recorded, so that in case of delay or other circumstances 
he can make a complaint agaiust the farmer or other 
person concerned. One important thing is for the 
traveller to learn the sounds uttered by the driver, as the 
ordinary language used by Englishmen for stopping or 
making the animal go is quite unintelligible where a 
Norwegian pony is concerned. 



The arrivals at the Zoological Gardens present a most 
remarkable variety of species belonging to many different 
orders of the animal world. This diversity of forms and 
species arriving together suggests the thought that hybrid- 
isation may not be of uncommon occurrence among animals 
that are deprived of their liberty and kept together under 
very unnatural and artificial circumstances, that the cross- 
ing and mixing of different species of animals is by no 
means of rare occurrence, and many very interesting and 
curious facts have become known in consequence ; I there- 
fore intend to devote a portion of my space to a consider- 
ation and explanation of many of the most remarkable 
instances of the breeding of hybrids, and the various kinds 
of hybrids known to reproduce their kind, for it is not 
generally believed that hybrids or mules are capable of 
reproducing. That such is most frequently the case 
cannot be doubted, but as I shall be able to show that a 
large number of well-authenticated hybrids have repro- 
duced, and continue to reproduce, it is a subject of 
considerable importance, and well deserves the attention 
of all persons who have the opportunity of ascertaining 
facts, and carefully recording their observations upon this 
matter. It is a difficult and troublesome task to collect 
reliable information, rendered especially so by the want 
of knowledge so common among the great mass of persons 
who have been led to believe in the utter uselessness of 



attempting to breed with what is generally called a mule, 
which is regarded as a sterile or barren, and, therefore, for 
breeding purposes, a useless or worthless animal. As, 
however, I shall bring forward only those cases in proof of 
which no possible doubt can exist, I hope to establish 
firmly in the minds of my readers that many of the 
animals resulting in the union of distinct species are 
capable of reproducing and continuing their race. 

What is a species ? What is a hybrid ? With the 
former question it is necessary to first consider, or at least 
to make an attempt to define the meaning of the term 
species, before we can enter upon the second inquuy. 

The word species means a, single race of beings ; but to 
avoid a too lengthy dissertation I will simply say that 
animals found in a wild state, differing sufficiently from all 
others in form, colour, size, marking, habits, voice, and 
other distinguishing characters, are recognized by persons 
who, by study and observation, have attended to those 
characters, as separate species. Such persons are, and 
miist be admitted as, the only authorities who can decide 
upon any differences, and as being capable of fixing names 
to the animals distinguished as of different species. 

Certain animals, hereafter to be mentioned, which are 
described and admitted by all the most reliable authorities 
to be of distinct and well-kno\Mi species, have, from time 
to time, come together, and the result has been offspring, 
commonly called hybrids, mules, or bastards. The reason 
why the animals of a mixed species are not common, and, 
therefore, are not frequently found in any large number 
together, is accounted for by the fact that they rarely have 
the opportunity of reproducing their kind. Another reason 
is that they are so generally regarded as unable to repro- 
duce that few pei-sons think of attempting to breed them. 
A still more potent reason will be found in the fact that a 



general antipathy exists in opposition to keeping a (so- 
called) mongrel race of any animal. 

In pointing out the best known hybrids that are, and 
have been, prominently brought before the public in the 
shape of birds, and which are, and have been, of small size, 
I will remark that any person who has paid but the small- 
est attention to the subject, cannot fail to admit that a 
goldfinch and a bullfinch are two well-marked and distinct 
species, and that these birds have frequently bred together 
and unmistakable mules have been the result. The mule 
goldfinch more frequently breeds with a female canary, and 
the latter bird will breed freely with several well-recognized 
and distinct species of finches. 

It is perfectly true that in a state of nature wild animals 
of distinct species rarely interbreed. A few well-known 
instances of such a thing happening are, however, recorded 
upon the most trustworthy and unquestionable authority. 
But the object of the present remarks is to elicit closer 
observation, and cause more attention to be given and 
more experiments to be tried by competent persons who 
have the opportunity to investigate this hitherto neglected 

In France the breeding of the different kinds of game 
birds, mostly of the family of the Phasianidce, and the 
crossing of the various species with the intention of test- 
ing the kinds that produce fertile hybrids, are now attract- 
ing considerable attention. It has already been proved 
that several well-marked species when bred together 
produce fertile hybrids. In other cases, in which the 
parents belong to genera that are far removed, such as the 
pheasant and common fowl, the result has been a barren 
or sterile offspring, and this is a very reasonable result, 
because the difference between the common fowl and 
pheasant is so great that they have always been considered 



generally distinct, and it may be regarded as a fair indica- 
tion of the value of the generic distinction that their union 
should produce sterile offspring. 

It may be remarked that by far the larger number of 
instances of hybridisation that can and will be brought 
forward are among the Gallince and Anatidcc, and the 
reason is obvious, as these two orders of birds are those 
most frequently kept in a semi-domesticated state, and 
consequently the different species are most frequently 
crossed by accident, or by the intention of those who keep 
them under these conditions. 

Many well-known instances of different species of water- 
fowl have produced fertile hybrids ; among them we may 
mention the following on the list of Anatidce : — 

Chinese Goose (-4)1867- Y 
cygnoides) J 

Pintail Duck (Dafila \ 
acuta) J 

Tufted Duck {FuU-\ 
gula cristata) j 

crossed ■with 

( Common Goose (Anser 

^^ domestica) 

f Common Duck (Anas 

\ boschas) 

( Niroca Pochard {Fiili- 

V gxda niroca) 

Among the Gallince the following have produced fertile 
hybrids : — 

Sonnerat's Jungle ) 
Fowl {(rollus Son- y 
neratii) ) 

Ooellated Turkey \ 
(Meleagris ocellata) ) 

Common Pheasant ^ 
(PImsianus colchic- >- 
cus) ) 

crossed with 

( Bankiva Jungle Fowl 
(^ (Gallus bankiva) 

Common Turkey (Me- 
leagris tnexicana) 

f Eing-necked Pheasant 
\ {Phasianus torquata) 

( Japanese Pheasant 

i^ (jP. versicolor) 

( Eeeves' Pheasant (P. 

\_ Reevesii) 

f Gold Pheasant (Thaii- 

\^ malea picta) 



Silver Pheasant ] 

(Euplocamus nyc- 

crossed with 



f Linneated (Euplo- 
\ camus lineatus) 

( Purple Kaleege {E. 
V, Horsfieldii) 
/ White-crested (j&.aibo- 
i^ cristatus) 

f Black-backed (-K. 

V mdanotus) 
f White-crested (^^.aJfto- 
(^ cristatus) 

( Black-backed {E. me- 
\^ lanotus) 

Purple {E. Horsfieldii) 
f White-crested (-B.aJbo- 
\ cristatus) 
" " " Purple {E. Horsfieldii) 

The remaining list comprises those hybrids that have 
hitherto been found barren or sterile :— 

Common Fowl ((raMi/s ^ 
domesticus) j 

Linneated {E. lineatus) 


crossed with < 

( Common Pheasant 

Guinea Fowl {Nu- \ 
mida meleagris) f 

Gold Pheasant (Thau- 
malea picta) 

Silver Pheasant ) 

{Euplocamus nyc- V 
themerus) ) 

Reeves' Pheasant ^ 
(PhasianusReevesii) j 

Black Grouse (Tetrao \ 
tetrix) / 

Eed Grouse (T. scoticus) 

AYood Grouse 


(T. V 

i^ (Phasianus colchicus) 
f Guinea Fowl {Nnmida 
(^ meleagris) 
f Purple Kaleege {Eu- 
\ plocamus Horsfieldii) 
( Pea Fowl {Pam cris- 
y tatus) 

( Silver Pheasant 

< {Euplocamus nycthe- 
[^ merus) 

f Common Pheasant 
i {Phasianus colchicus) 

f Cheer Pheasant (P. 
\ Wallichii) 
f Common Pheasant 
(^ (P. colchicus) 
C Common Pheasant 
^^ (P. culchicus) 
Black Grouse (Tetrao 



Among mammals hybrids are comparatively rare, the 
mule, produced between the horse and ass, being the 
most common, and although large numbers of those 
hybrids are bred and kept, instances of their reproducing 
are extremely rare. Among ruminants a few instances 
are to be found. The two species of camel (Gamebis 
dromedarius and C hactrianus) will breed together; the 
llama (Auchenia glama) will breed with the alpaca {A. 
]pacos), and the offspring are fertile. Several species of 
deer, when crossed, produce fertile hybrids : for instance, 
the Barbary deer {Gervus harbarus) with the red deer 
(C. elaphus), the Mexican (C. mexicanus) with the Virginian 
deer (C virginianus). Several others are also recorded upon 
good authority. 

Several instances of hybrids among the carnivora are 
well authenticated. The lion (Felis leo) has bred with the 
tiger {F. tigris), the leopard {F. leopardus) with the jaguar 
(F. onca), the wild cat {F. catus) with the domestic cat {F. 

Dogs, wolves, and jackals when crossed produce fertile 
offspring; but a cross between a dog and true fox is a 
thing at present only stated upon very unsatisfactory 
evidence ; proof is wanting that such a cross has ever taken 
place. The same want of proof exists respecting the so- 
called leporines, said to be a cross between the hare and 
rabbit. Let it be borne in mind the wonderful difference 
that exists between these two species at the time of birth : 
the young hares are born in a very fully and perfectly 
developed condition, well clothed, the eyes open, and a few 
hours after birth they run about and feed themselves. 
What is the condition of the young rabbits ? They are 
naked and iU7id, remain in the nest at least a fortnight or 
three weeks. All the so-called leporines _ are rabbits, not 
only in this, but in every other character. 



This remarkable habit of adaptation possessed by some 
animals has been from time immemorial a kind of 
mystery, and notwithstanding all that has been written 
upon this siibjeot, there still appears but little really 
known or understood about it. In a very elaborate 
treatise published in the Gyclopmdia of Anatomy and 
Physiology, by Dr. Marshall Hall, many facts well known to 
the practical naturalist are altogether omitted, and state- 
ments made that are certainly unsupported by careful 
well-conducted experiments. 

It is, for instance, stated at page 765, " The direct effect 
of cold on the animal frame is, as I shall shortly have 
occasion to state particularly, totally different from hiber- 
nation. Hibernation is a physiological condition ; the 
direct effect of cold or torpor is, on the contrary, a patho- 
logical and generally a fatal one." 

Now the above does not appear to be a correct view of 
the subject, for it cannot be denied that the temperature 
alone has more influence upon hibernating animals than 
any other cause, unless we refer to the mud fish of Africa 
{Lepidosiren), that hibernate all the dry season ; but this 
is a totally different state of hibernation, to which we 
shall again refer. Again at page 767, " To walk over the 
floor, to touch the table, is sufficient, in many instances, 
to reproduce respiration and to frustrate the experiment." 

It is quite evident from the above that the animals 



were simply asleep in the ordinary sense of that condition, 
and not in a state of hibernation at all, for all the noise 
and rattling is insufficient to rouse it from its lethargy. 

An instance occurred to some pet marmots which our 
servant found one cold morning fast asleep, and believing 
them dead, consigned them to the dust-hole. They were, 
however, rescued before they were quite buried in the 
ashes that follow in the usual course of funerals. 

Many animals sleep soundly, and may be regarded as 
dormant, but not torpid ; but animals in a perfect state 
of hibernation are not only dormant, but torpid, a state in 
which the animal's temperature is much lowered ; the 
respiration and circulation, together with the digestive 
functions, nearly cease, and the organs of secretion and 
excretion are inactive. In this condition but little air is 
required. This is clearly shown by the experiments 
published by Dr. Marshall Hall, p. 776 : " The respiration 
continues low, the temperature falls, and the animal can 
bear, for a short period, the abstraction of atmospheric 

This calls strongly to mind the fact that the rough 
labouring population, who are possessed of enormous 
strength, which enables them to continue the most 
laborious work in mines and dismal places, sleep, when 
nature requires rest, the apparent sleep of death, in the 
most foul and stifling atmosphere, and wake up with the 
strength of refreshed giants. Whatever may be said or 
thought upon the necessity of well-ventilated and airy 
sleeping rooms, the fact of a large mass of our species 
living and doing well in a totally dififerent state remains 
yet to be explained. Many generations of these powerful 
and robust men have existed without any apparent 
diminution in strength or courage, like bears and lions 
sleeping in caves and loathsome places. Contrast their 



state with that of the highly favoured of our race, whose 
sleeping apartments possess every comfort, have all the 
requirements necessary to a sanitary condition that an 
enlightened nation can imagine, and yet he sleeps not, or 
if he do, it is so imperfectly that all the hours required to 
rest an exhausted frame are either wakeful or dreaming. 

It would be esteemed by many of our species as a great 
boon could they sleep quietly through the cold and gloomy 
season of the year without having to encounter a few 
difficulties which would ine^dtably present themselves to 
their so doing. As a preparatory measure they would 
have to undergo the process during the summer and 
autumn months of laying up a store of fat, to which those 
who have no desire to become obese would object. Again, 
they would have to be prepared to settle all accounts 
previous to retiring to their winter quarters ; and much 
difficulty would be experienced in keeping out of the reach 
of those who appear "wide awake under every circum- 
stance." Consequently many endless disadvantages would 
be attendant upon a torpid state of being, had such been 
allotted to our kind. 

But to creatures that could not exist in an active state 
during the cold season, it is of immense importance that 
they are endowed with the habit of fasting and sleeping 
during that time. The different animals that are able to 
live, for lengthened periods, without food, are worthy of 
remark. Among mammalia we have bats, hedgehogs, 
bears, marmots, squirrels, dormice, and many others, which 
possess that power, although varying much in the time, 
the duration of which depends upon the temperature. No 
kind of bird, however, hibernates, or can live in a torpid 

Some species wake up occasionally on warm sunny days 
in hard winter and take a meal, and again retire to " sleep 



the happy hours away." Squirrels and dormice frequently 
do so, as also some of the species of bats ; the warmth of 
the day causing a few insects to put in an appearance, 
upon which the bats feed for an hour or two, and again 
quietly hide up before the temperature lowers sufficiently 
to produce numbness. These, like the dormice and other 
rodents, when in a torpid state, are, to the touch, if taken 
into the hand, perfectly cold, and are quite motionless, and 
to all appearance dead ; but upon the temperature being 
raised, they become in a short time lively and active. 
Were it necessary to enlarge by additional facts to show 
that in a large number of cases temperature is sufficient 
to account for the lethargy, a better case cannot be selected 
than the common dormouse ; nothing more is required 
to rouse this little pet from his slumber than to increase 
the warmth of the apartment ; the animal will without 
injury wake up and feed as often during the winter as is 
thought proper ; endless experiments have been success- 
fully tried to prove this. Let it, however, be borne in 
mind that these animals to be experimented upon must be 
perfectly healthy, and in the excessively fat state natural 
to them before the winter sets in, otherwise they will not 
live during the cold weather. Another important matter 
is not to change the, temperature too rapidly, for few 
animals can live or continue in good health if the tempera- 
ture is suddenly and frequently changed by many degrees. 
There can be no question that the animals that hibernate 
are always excessively fat previous to retiring to sleep, for 
if otherwise, they would die from the effects of the cold 
and exhaustion ; it is equally certain that during the period 
of hibernation this store of fat is being consumed by ab- 
sorption, for at the termination of the winter those animals 
that have slept all the cold season wake up quite thin and 



It is a curious fact that bears never hibernate in cap- 
tivity, at least no instance has been on record to the 
knowledge of the writer, although in Europe the brown 
bear is known to do so in a state of nature. 


Many cases can be brought forward to prove that 
migratory birds are frequently found in a torpid state 
during the winter, and which upon being placed in a warm 
room soon revive, and possibly with care and proper food 
may be recovered ; but I fail to find any instance of any 
kind of bird surviving under any circumstances without 
food for two or three weeks or as many months. Unless 
the animal is able to support life for many weeks in a state 
of hibernation it would be a failure to sleep or become 
torpid for a day or two only. Any animal that becomes 
torpid without the power of hibernating must necessarily 
die if allowed to remain in that state. The obj ect of hiberna- 
tion is to pass away time, and preserve the animal's life 
during the season when its food cannot be obtained. Now 
if birds of any kind were able to do this, we should have 
no difficulty in finding abundance of proof of their capa- 
bility of doing so. That a few unfortunate migratory birds 
are every year left to perish by the cold and want of food 
is well known, and the fact of landrails being more 
frequently found than most other birds is easily explained. 
No doubt many pass the winter in Great Britain in 
sheltered situations (the late Mr. Yarrell, in his British 
Birds, gives instances of landrails being killed throughout 
the winter months), where they find a sufficiency of food 
to support life ; a very scanty supply would answer, for, be 
it observed, the landrail becomes excessively fat in the 
autumn, and, like the animals that hibernate, this store of 



fat is absorbed aud aids in keeping up the strength of the 
bird during the cold and starving period. Numerous 
instances of migratory birds remaining in Great Britain are 
met with, and many are easily accounted for, — ^wounded 
wings or injured feathers are quite sufficient to detain 
them ; and the dying down and withering of the vegetation, 
thereby affording Httle shelter, render landrails more 
likely to be discovered, although they creep into almost 
any place for concealment. That some birds can exist for 
six or seven days without food or water is a fact of which 
the writer can furnish undoubted proof; but a really 
hibernating bird has at present an existence only in the 
imagination, and would be as difficult to find as Queen 
Anne's ghost. 

When once a belief is well and widely established, it 
appears to me to be quite useless, however frequently it 
may be contradicted and the truth of the story denied, to 
try to make converts to a contrary opimon. It is like 
weeds in a garden, which crop up again and again onlj- 
to be destroyed for a time. To get entirely rid of them 
seems impossible. A case in point is the old story of the 
hibernation of the swallow, which lingers still in many 
parts of this country. Only as late as April 2, 1881, there 
appeared in Land and Water a letter upon this subject. 
I wrote the following in reply : — 


It appears to me to be most extraordinary that any 
persons having only a trifling knowledge of birds and 
their habits should at the present day entertain for one 
moment the slightest doubt upon this subject, and that 
they, in order to give a little strength to this doubt, 
should refer to the ancient but long-exploded statements 

225 Q 


of those who have left this sublunary sphere a hundred 
years or more, 

Now, considering how numerous is the swallow tribe in, 
Europe — every summer countless thousands swarm in all 
suitable localities, and breed in almost every city, town, 
and village — were it the habit or nature of these birds to 
retire into caves, hollow trees, holes in walls, the roofs of 
buildings, or to sink into ponds, brooks, or rivers, surely 
some of them would be found in the dormant state during 
the winter months. Such a state of things never occurs, 
and if this supposed hibernation took place, specimens 
would be forthcoming not only casually, as it has been 
stated, but constantly, for the very reason that the study 
of Natural History of late years has made such rapid 
strides, that thousands of people of an inquiring mind are 
upon the look-out for anjrfching new and interesting, and 
the sight of a living swallow in a torpid state would be 
regarded by these persons as one of the " wonders of the 
world," and attention would be at once called to such an 
unexpected circumstance. The fact that swallows are 
found in large numbers during their visits to this country, 
and constantly near human habitations, feeding upon the 
flies and other ephemera most abundant in the locality, 
would naturally lead us to expect they would hibernate 
(if such was a fact) not far away from the places that 
supplied them with food, and, if such was the case, there 
would be no difficulty in their being discovered. 

Now, putting all other considerations aside in order to 
test the matter fairly, and show that I am inclined to 
give those who believe in the theory of torpid swallows a 
chance of proving their case, I am willing to pay the sum 
of ten pounds for every hibernating or torpid swallow 
brought to me alive, during the months of December, 
January, and February. I must, however, guard myself 



against the production of swallows that have been kept 
in captivity, knowing well (having myself kept them all 
the year in a cage) that this can be done ; but what I 
must insist upon is, that any swallow brought to me in 
the months before named must be alive and well authenti- 
cated as to the place and conditions in which it was 

I have not, as a result of this offer, had to pay for a 
single specimen, otherwise I certainly should have been 
ruined had there existed any truth in the statement 
made by the people who believe they know all about the 

A reference to the dictionary explains the word " hiber- 
nate," to winter : to pass the season of winter in close 
quarters or in seclusion. The words hibernate and hiber- 
nation would appear to be used in this correspondence in 
a wrong sense. 

Professor Newton, writing on the subject, says: — "The 
alleged torpidity of swallows or other birds is quite a 
different thing, and I have never met (nor do I expect to 
meet) with evidence of it that I can accept." 



No act of nature affords so wide a field for speculation 
as that of the migration of animals. The causes that 
influence their movements, the power that directs them, 
the object and importance of the natural laws that govern 
and impel them to depart from a particular spot and to 
return to it, at some future time, by the most miraculous 
and unerring certainty, probably after the lapse of a year 
or more, are mysteries that require profound consideration 
before we can attempt to describe, or even to suggest, by 
what impulse they are guided. 

The inclination to travel from place to place is strongly 
implanted in by far the largest portion of the animal 
creation, and it may be fairly considered that the migra- 
tory far outnumber the non-migratory species. There are 
two Orders among vertebrate animals the power of loco- 
motion of which best adapts them for migration — viz. the 
Orders Aves and Pisces ; and in those Orders we find many 
species that annually migrate, some that occasionally, some 
that rarely, and others that never do so. The desire to 
migrate has been attributed by some to an actual neces- 
sity, such as scarcity of food ; but that does not fairly 
account for it, as many of our summer birds leave this 
country at the time that food is most abundant. We 
might, with equal right, argue that the animals that 
hibernate do so on account of the supply of food failing ; 
but we have already shown, in a previous paper, that such 



is not the case, as many of the animals that retire to sleep, 
store up beforehand a large quantity of food, in case of 
waking up during the winter. 

The temperature has a most important influence over 
the sensitive organs of an animal, which are further stimu- 
lated by electric changes in the atmosphere, and the more 
careful the attention bestowed upon the subject, the more 
must ultimately be revealed to us many of the causes of 
the movements observed in the highly-organized and sen- 
sitive aerial being known to us as a bird ; the changes in 
the state of the atmosphere, its moisture or dryness, its 
electric or non-electric condition, are all indicated by the 
actions of that wonderful creature, which warn us of the 
coming storm, as surely as they indicate the return of 
spring or the approach of winter. 

Bearing in mind that no other animal, however delicately 
or highly organized, can feel these changes, or give evi- 
dences of them, so completely as a bird, which by its 
power of flight can rise from the hot or cold earth and 
fly, at will, to a warm or cold, dry or moist climate, to 
suit its pleasure or necessity ; we may venture to say that 
the great laws of animal distribution are carried on by 
the changed condition of climate and of food, and conse- 
quent suitability. That migration was ordained by an all- 
wise Providence at, and has continued from, the creation, 
a necessity, not only to all animals but to man, is beyond 
a doubt. 

The arrival in spring at the Northern or Arctic regions 
of migratory birds for the purpose of breeding, instils new 
life and carries fresh food to the men and animals that 
have survived through the gloomy winter. Thus, like re- 
suscitation in a single individual, the exciting causes for 
renewed activity are developed. 

Having supplied the wants of the inhabitants of their 


native country, and increased and multiplied their own 
species, they leave with their progeny for a less severe 
climate, arriving in good time on our own shore to afford 
food just as the most severe part of the winter renders 
their appearance most welcome, thus balancing their 
favours by periodical visits to the hungry poor of both 
regions. Not only are the starving people of the cold 
regions supplied with food by migratory birds, but also 
were the famished Israelites suppled with food in the 
wilderness by the same means, as our much-loved British 
naturalist, the late Mr. Yarrell, in vol. ii., p. 358, quotes 
from the Psalms : — 

" He caused an east wind to blow in the heaven : and by His 
power He brought in the south wind. He rained flesli also 
upon them as dust, and feathered fowls ... in the midst of 
their camp, round about their habitations. So they did eat, and 
were well filled : for He gave them^ their own desire." 

Mr. Yarrell, after a careful investigation of this passage, 
remarks at p. 360, vol. ii. : — 

"With these facts before us, considering the positive 
testimony of the Psalmist, that the unexpected supply of 
food to the Israelites was a bird, and that bird, agreeably 
to the Septuagint and Josephus, a quail, that only one 
species of quail migrates in prodigious numbers, that 
species, the subject of the present notice, we are authorized 
to pronounce the Cohornix dadylisonans to be the identical 
species with which the Israelites were fed. We have here 
proof of the perpetuation of an instinct through 3300 years 
not pervading a whole species, but that part of a species 
existing within certain geographical limits; an instinct 
characterized by a peculiarity, which modern observers 
have also noticed, of making their migratory flights by 

Innumerable lives are lost during the migratory move- 



ments, and on arriving at the desired spot large numbers 
are slaughtered by the anxiously awaiting inhabitants, who 
receive them with a fiery warmth. Such is the unfortunate 
fate of many of our own species who migrate to strange 
lands, and mstead of becoming settlers are cruelly settled 
by the rude natives, who, rightly or strongly, object to the 
intrusion of enterprising strangers. 

Migratory animals frequently are compelled by the 
nature of their food to shift their quarters as the food 
upon which they exist may be moving, such as fishes or 
insects, consequently birds or other animals are obliged 
to follow in the rear or wake of their lively-anticipated 
meal ; but in the case of animals that feed on vegetable 
substances, such as fruit, seeds, berries, etc., that are only 
to be found at certain seasons, they must also shift from 
place to place and follow the season that produces their 
food, reminding one of the story of a man whose penchant 
for green peas caused him to visit Smyrna, he having 
heard that at that place they could be obtained in 
great perfection long before they made their appearance 
in more northern localities. Having enjoyed his feast 
until he found them getting rather harder and older than 
he liked them, he followed the growing crops northward 
until he reached the extreme limits of Scotland, where 
he ended the pea season about the time to take his 
departure again for Smyrna to again enjoy this delicious 

This may be regarded as an apt illustration of one kind 
of migration, for had our species been born pea-eaters we 
should no doubt migrate accordingly. 

Many species of birds follow the successive growing 
crops of wild plants in order to feed upon the fruit or seed ; 
consequently their extension is dependent upon the dis- 
tribution of the plants, upon the fruit or seed of which they 



exist : as an illustration we may point to such plants as 
the thistle, the seed of which is provided with a most 
beautiful and perfect floating apparatus, which causes it 
to be wafted by the slightest current of air for miles 
across the country, aye, even to be borne by the wind 
beyond the sea, which, rapidly becoming disseminated 
over the earth, are the means of attracting and of inducing 
to migrate the creatures that live upon their seed. 

A singular confirmation of this may be found in the 
partially changed habits of the common goldfinch. Since 
the formation in this country of railways the thistles have 
increased on the uncultivated banks or sides of the 
various cuttings on the different lines, and goldfinches, as 
they feed greatly upon thistle seed, have congregated in 
the localities where that weed abounds, and have become 
comparatively rare in places where formerly they were 

The introduction and cultivation of a particular kind 
of grain or fruit into a country will tend to attract some 
of the wild animals from the surrounding forest to the 
cultivated ground, and to increase ■their numbers by the 
food so readily obtained. An instance of this kind is 
causing the cultivators of the grape in Australia much 
trouble, as since the introduction of the vine to that 
country, the large fruit-eating bats (Pteropus polioccphalus) 
have committed much damage. Collecting in large 
numbers after dark, they devour the grapes in prodigious 
quantities, and as their numbers appear on the increase, 
it is doubtful whether the cultivation of the grape can be 
continued with any prospect of success in Australia. It 
is said that the authorities in Australia were at one time 
in great fear of the escape of lions, tigers, or other large 
carnivora from travelling collections, for should these 
formidable creatures only obtain a footing, the abundance 



of sheep and other food, together with a suitable climate, 
would assist in their rapid increase, and once established, 
the mischief would be beyond the power of the inhabitants 
to stop or control. 

Great opportunities are afforded to migratory birds to 
cross the sea. They are enabled to rest on at times large 
floating masses, such as that commonly known as the 
Gulf weed, which, according to some authors, is equal in 
size to the area of Great Britain, and which not only 
affords them a resting-place, but in many instances sup- 
plies them with food, for these masses swarm with living 
animals of endless kinds, insects, crustaceans, mollusca, 

Many years since a dead whale floated on the coast of 
Devonshire ; it was almost white, being thickly covered 
with the grey phalaropes ; many hundreds of these beauti- 
ful and rare British birds congregated upon the floating 
carcass, and no doubt fed upon parasites and other 
creatures that infested it, and on portions of fat. These 
birds were quite tame, and the boys about Devonport and 
Plymouth killed great numbers of them with sticks ; had 
these birds not met with such wanton destroyers they 
might, in all probability, have established themselves on 
our shores, as one or two instances are recorded of their 
being found in this country in the breeding season, 
although their great breeding-ground is, according to Mr. 
Yarrell, in the Arctic regions. Porpoises of various species, 
sea-gulls and other fish-eating birds, and fish-devouring 
fishes, follow to our shores the shoals of smaller fry upon 
which they feed, just as the lions and other carnivora 
follow, across the land, the herds of antelopes, and thus 
distribute and spread their kind. 

In the second volume of Sir Charles Lyell's Principles 
of Geology is a chapter upon migration of plants and 



animals, abounding with the most interesting facts bearing 
upon this subject, from which we beg to make the following 
quotation. At p. 357 we read : — 

" In very severe winters great numbers of the black bears of America migrate 
from Canada into the United States, but in milder seasons, when they have 
been well fed, they remain and hibernate in the North." 

And at p. 363 it is stated : — ' 

" The late Admiral W. H. Smyth informed me that, when cruising in the 
Cornwallis amidst the Philippine Islands, he saw more than once, after those 
dreadful hurricanes called typhoons, floating masses of wood, with trees 
growing upon them. The ships have sometimes been in imminent peril, as 
these islands were often mistaken for terra Jirma, when, in faet, they were in 
rapid motion. 

" It is highly interesting to trace, in imagination, the effects of the passage 
of these rafts from the mouth of a large river to some archipelago, raised 
from the deep by the operations of the volcano and the earthquake. If a 
storm arise, and the first vessel be wrecked, still many a bird and insect may 
succeed in gaining by flight some island of the newly-formed group, while 
the seeds and berries of herbs and shrubs which fall into the waves may be 
thrown upon the strand. But if the surface of the deep be calm, and the 
rafts are carried along by a current, or wafted by some slight breath of air 
fanning the foliage of the green trees, it may arrive, after a passage of several 
weeks, at the bay of an island, into which its plants and animals may be 
poured out as from an ark, and thus a colony of several hundred new species 
may at once be naturalized. 

" Although the transportation of such rafts may be of extremely rare and 
accidental occurrence, and may happen only once in thousands or tens of 
thousands of years, they may yet account in tropical countries for the exten- 
sion of some species of mammalia, birds, insects, landshells, and plants to 
lands which without such aid they could never have reached. 

"Some birds in the Order Passeres devour the seeds of plants in great 
quantities, which they eject again in very distant places, without destroying 
its faculty of vegetation : thus a flight of larks will fill the cleanest field with 
a great quantity of various kinds of plants, as the Melilot trefoil (Medicago 
lupulina), and others whose seeds are so heavy that the wind is not able to 
scatter them to any distance. In like manner, the blackbird and missel- 
thrush, when they devour berries in too great quantities, are known to consign 
them to the earth undigested in their excrement. 

" The sudden death to which great numbers of frugivorous birds are annually 
exposed must not be omitted as auxiliary to the transportation of seed to 
new habitations. When the sea retires from the shore, and leaves fruit and 
seeds on the beach or in the mud of estuaries, it might by the returning tide 
wash them away again or destroy them by long immersion ; but when they 
are gathered by land birds which frequent the sea-side, or by waders and 



water-fowl, they are often borne inland, and if the bird to whose crop they 
have been consigned is killed, they may be left to grow up from the sea. 

" A deer has strayed from the herd, when browsing in some rich pasture, 
when he is suddenly alarmed by the approach of his foe. He instantly takes 
to flight, dashing through many a thicket, and swimming across many a river 
and lake. The seeds of the herbs and shrubs which have adhered to his 
smoking flanks and even many a thorny spray, which has been torn off and 
has fixed itself in his hairy coat, are brushed off again in other thickets and 
copses. Even on the spot where the victim is devoured many of the seeds 
which he had swallowed immediately before the chase may be left on the 
ground uninjured and ready to spring up in a new soil.'' 

Any one accustomed to keeping, in cages or aviaries, 
birds that are migratory, knows full well the season in 
which the habit of migration takes place ; the birds that 
are perfectly tame and reconciled to captivity, all at once 
become uneasy and restless, fly about the cage, jumping 
and dashing here and there the whole night through, 
calling aloud, and almost ceasing to take food, and for 
several days and nights this determination to depart will 
sometimes last. Strange to say the same thing again 
occurs at the season to return to this country; but in 
this case the restlessness is much less severe and is soon 
over. Year after year this same desire to migrate is 
manifested by the same birds. 



On the first thoughts upon this subject it may appear 
of little importance to the general observer how long it 
may require to hatch an egg, and under what conditions 
it can be hatched, but after a little consideration many 
circumstances will become known that cannot fail to 
impress upon us the powerful and undeviating law that 
exists in all created life, the fixed period for change from 
one state of existence to another, not only observable in 
the advancement of the embryo in the egg, but continuing 
through the whole life of every individual of every species. 
As the most ready and easily-explained examples, let us 
take the eggs of birds: we find an unalterable and 
measured time required for hatching the eggs of one 
class or order of birds, and in this way we find that the 
eggs of some kinds of birds will hatch at a much earlier 
period than others ; as, for instance, the pigeon's eggs 
hatch at the end of fourteen days, the common fowl at 
twenty-one days, the duck at twenty-eight days, the 
geese at thirty-five. It will be seen by this the remark- 
able regularity of the period of the multiplying of the 
universal seventh day. The longest period required for 
hatching the eggs of birds occurs with the struthious birds 
(ostriches), and the period is seven times seven, or seven 
weeks. It will be thus seen that the earliest time 
recorded will be twice seven and the longest time known 
seven times seven. This certainty of time, as before 



stated, does not depend upon external circumstances, nor 
can it be influenced by them without damage or loss of 
life ; for instance, no increase of heat beyond that employed 
or generated by the parent birds will hasten or quicken 
the production of the young bird, while, on the other hand, 
a lower temperature is likely to prove fatal instead of 
retarding its development. 

, The consideration of these immutable laws, and the con- 
stancy of their appearance before us in such various 
shapes and forms, prove beyond all doubt the existence of 
phenomena of which we have at present but a faint 
glimpse. Do we not see the same regularity of a fixed 
time, and that the same number of days between the 
changes that occur in the maladies to which we and other 
animals are subject — are not the marked and noticeable 
changes every seven days ? That this number, recurring 
as it has and must have done in all time, doubtless led 
our species to recognize the seventh day, and our laws, 
terms of apprenticeship and imprisonment, leases of 
houses and land, and endless other matters, probably came 
into use from the observable regularity of this fixed and 
unalterable law set before us. 

It is not only in the incubation of the eggs of birds that 
this recurrence of the seventh as a period of change is con- 
stant, but in the instance of birds' eggs it is so easily 
watched and recorded, for the development of most 
diseases is marked by the same time ; whether it be small- 
pox, ague, or any other fever, the same law appears to 
influence the state of the sufferer, and mark the changes 
that take place regularly, for better or worse. 

Even in the ordinary course of the natural production 
from the egg, we may be pardoned in remarking that much 
misapprehension exists. It is by many believed that the 
parent birds assist the young in breaking out of the egg. 



This is altogether a fallacy. In no instance does anything 
of the kind occur. The young bird chips or breaks through 
unaided (except by the warmth imparted) by the parents. 
The marked difference in the period required in hatching 
the various kinds of birds is also marked by the different 
state or condition of the young at the time they are 
hatched. For instance, the pigeon that is hatched in 
fourteen days is naked and blind, and has to be fed by the 
parents, and remains in the nest until it has grown its 
feathers and is enabled to fly. The chicken, however, 
that required twenty-one days to hatch, comes out pre- 
pared to run about, well clothed in down, its eyes well open, 
and it commences to pick up its food from the ground, 
and is in every way perfectly able to shift for itself without 
the aid of its parents, if provided with food and shelter. 

The early hatching of the pigeons and other birds that 
remain long in the nest, and require to be fed and attended 
by the parent birds, contrasts strongly with others that 
are produced in a far more perfect state. This perfect and 
imperfect state of development is not confined, however, 
to any particular class or order of the vertebrate animals, 
for in the mammalia we have the same state of early 
birth in the Marsupial animals, — such as the kangaroo 
and opossums, who are provided with pouches to receive 
imperfectly-developed young ; while in the Ruminants — 
such as deer and antelopes, etc. — the young are able to 
run and follow their parents soon after birth. It is not a 
little remarkable, however, the diversity that exists in 
this matter among the Rodents; for instance, the hare 
and rabbit. In the former the young are well clothed, 
see, and feed soon after birth, while the rabbit is bom 
naked and blind, and remains in the nest for weeks. 
Many other instances could be adduced of this singular 
diversity in the large Order known as Bodentia. 


Missing Page 


all the washing and scrubbing had failed to remove this 
dreadful mark, and who, upon one occasion, was addressed 
by a visitor, probably an enterprising inventor or proprietor 
of a celebrated washing-powder, who offered to remove the 
stain on the floor in less than five minutes by the applica- 
tion of only one penny packet of his wonderful washing- 
powder. The old lady looked at him aghast, and, with a 
vehement gesture, exclaimed, " No, sir, it has been there 
all these years, and I would not have it touched or rubbed 
out by you or your washing-powder for all the world." 

So it is with many old notions and ideas most difficult 
to banish. They last and linger on for generations, to the 
surprise and astonishment of those who know better. To 
be called upon to tell people that the old method of con- 
sidering all animals amphibious that passed as much of 
their time in the water as on the land, is looked upon as 
absurd, for they include those creatures having no affinity 
or relationship whatever — such as the hippopotamus, seals, 
otters, beavers, crocodiles, turtles, penguins, and others, 
who are only aquatic or semi-aquatic. To call these and 
others amphibious is as confusing and difficult as to deter- 
mine what is or is not an aquatic animal. 

I myself once suffered the misfortune of this want of 
knowledge of discrimination on the part of the owner of 
(what he believed and called) a very rare and wonderful 
amphibious animal, and whose description baffled the 
ingenuity of all who heard it to determine what it might 
be. The incident caused no little amusement as well as 
disappointment to one always ready to investigate and 
determine for himself. To undertake a rather long 
journey, and undergo the mortification of beholding a 
common spotted cavy or paca (Ocelogenys paca) standing in 
a puddle of water in the small garden at the back of its 
owner's house, instead of a wonderful amphibian. To be 



angry was out of the question, as the owner insisted upon 
it that it was amphibious, and in proof of his assertion 
pointed out that it was up to its middle in water, and 
that it passed as much of its time in as out of water. 
With these facts, it was useless to offer any further argu- 
ment or opposition; the owner certainly had the best of it. 
But the result always acted as a caution not too readily to 
rush off to see a new and unknown amphibious animal. 

How often do we find creatures that have never been 
suspected of frequenting water quite at home in that 
element. Looking at the great South American ant-eater 
{Myrmecophaga jubata), a more unlikely beast never was 
seen ; yet into the river he goes, and washes, and swims, 
and plays about for hours. Who would expect any of the 
family of bats to be addicted to aquatic life ? Yet some 
species of this family have been met with, both in Africa 
and America, that are semi-aquatic. In the former country 
they feed on shrimps, and in the latter upon fish, which 
they catch in their sharp-hooked claws. 

How few animals are as helpless as man, when for the 
first time immersed in water ! Most wild animals swim, 
and that without teaching or learning of any kind. Man 
raises his arms in despair, sinks to the bottom helpless, 
overpowered and rendered incapable of offering that kind 
of resistance exhibited under the same circumstances by 
most of the lower animals. 




Unquestionably the first of this species that had ever 
been brought into Europe was forwarded to me by Mr. 
Edward Blyth, in the year 1844, by the ship Lord Hunger- 
ford. On the arrival of the vessel at Blackwall, in 1844, 
I was called upon to pay £40 freight. I provided myself 
with two or three assistants, and determined with their 
help to walk the animal to the Zoological Gardens. I 
had ropes attached to its head in order to check it if it 
attempted to run away, and under these arrangements we 
started on our expedition, having with me a canvas bag 
filled with salt, which was moistened on the outside, and 
which this animal showed a great fondness in licking. 
With this enticement the animal followed me on shore, 
and we proceeded on our journey. As usual a London 
crowd soon collected, and with the natural accompaniment 
of noise and rough horse-play, surrounded our small party, 
to the great annoyance of myself and the subject in 

The animal having been on board ship so long without 
exercise, caused the journey to be most tedious and dis- 
tressing. We had not proceeded much more than half- 
way to the Gardens, when the poor beast was so fatigued, 
that it more than once attempted to lie down on. the road. 

One of my assistants then procured a whip, and it was 



by the application of this instrument that we succeeded 
in driving the animal to its destination safe and sound. 

In due course I was anxious to dispose of it to the 
Zoological Society, who declined to purchase the animal. 
I then offered it to the former Lord Derby, who also 
refused it. 

I then offered it to the Society if they would simply 
pay the freight, which amounted to £40. This also was 
refused. The animal lived in the Zoological Gardens 
from 1844 to 1846 ; after its death I proposed to the 
authorities of the British Museum that they should 
purchase the skin and skeleton, but this proposal was 

I prepared the skin and skeleton, and corresponded 
with Mr. Blyth, the then curator of the Calcutta Museum, 
who begged me to forward to Calcutta the skin and 
skeleton for the Museum, as they had no specimen. 

This I accordingly did, and I believe that both are to 
be seen in the Calcutta Museum at the present day. 


Missing Page 


belong to the bovine or ox group, to which also the goats 
and sheep claim a near relationship ; on the other hand, 
the true deer all belong to the Gervidce. 

Now, these two families are most easily distinguished 
one from the other, by the simple character of their horns. 
In the BovidcB the horns are never shed, and the true 
horn is supported by a bony core that fills up the hollow 
interior of the lower part of the horns. 

In the deer family, Gervidce, on the contrary, the horns 
are solid and most frequently branched or bearing numerous 
points or antlers. Moreover, these horns are cast off 
annually, and renewed in a most extraordinarily short 

The mode of reproduction of deer, or rather stags' horns 
has been so frequently and fully described, that it appears 
to me unnecessary to dwell upon this subject, more than 
to say the blood-vessels that supply this rapid growth are 
on the outside of the bony horn and covered over with a 
thick tough skin, externally coated with a velvet-like fur, 
which peels ofif as soon as the new horn is sufficiently hard 
to bear the rubbing against the trees or branches of trees, 
indulged in by these animals at the season in which the 
renewal of their horns takes place. 

There is one very remarkable animal, differing from all 
the other ruminants, ^dz. the American prong-homed 
antelope (Antilocapra Americana). This singular animal 
does not fit comfortably into any classification, but stands 
at present alone and unique, being the only known hollow- 
homed ruminant that sheds its horns. Many years since 
the North- American Indian hunters tried in vain to per- 
suade those eminent naturalists, Messrs. Audubon and 
Backman, that this animal shed its horns. In their second 
vol. of The Quadritpeds of North America, p. 198, will be 
found the following words : — 



" It was supposed by the hunters at Fort Union that 
the prong-horned antelope dropped its horns, but as no 
person had ever shot or killed one without these orna- 
mental and useful appendages, we managed to prove the 
contrary to the men at the Fort by knocking oif the bony 
part of the horn and showing the hard spony membrane 
beneath, well attached to the skull, and perfectly immov- 

It therefore continued to be unknown or disbelieved 
until Nov. 7, 1865. On the morning of that day I 
witnessed the shedding of the horns of this very singular 
animal, and at a meeting of the Zoological Society, Nov. 
28, 1865, 1 read a paper that was published in the Proceed- 
ings of the Society, calling attention to the fact. 

Three months afterwards a letter, stated to have been 
written seven or eight years ago by Dr. Canfield (but which 
had been laid aside and unnoticed), was forwarded to the 
Society and published in the Proceedings, 1866. In this 
letter it was made to appear, and most thoroughly 
established the fact, that the prong-horn shed its horns 
annually; yet, notwithstanding, some American writers 
doubt the accuracy of the conclusion at which the best 
authorities have arrived. During the last autumn the 
prong-homed antelope now living in the Society's Gardens 
shed and renewed his horns exactly in the same manner as 
stated and described in the paper alluded to, as read at 
the Zoological Society's meeting in 1865. 

There remains yet another group of animals that deserve 
a passing notice, because they are homed mammals, but 
not belonging to the bovine or cervine classes, and they 
are not ruminants. The group alluded to are the rhino- 
ceroses. They are horned, but the nature and structure of 
the horns differ so entirely from the homed animals before 
described that it appears necessary to give a few words of 



explanation with reference to their structure. In the 
different species of rhinoceros the liorns are attached, 
and grow with the skin of the animal ; they are not 
hollow, nor are they supported by a bony core, as in the 
bovine group. They (the horns) are not of a bony sub- 
stance, as in the cervine group, but are composed of a 
substance of agglutinated hair, resembling the structure of 
the hoofs. The horns of the rhinoceros grow during the 
animal's life, but by the constant wearing down they are 
kept in working order, and are, when the animal lives in a 
wild state, tolerably sharp-pointed. 


Previously to my paper, which was published in the 
Proceedings of the Zoological Society November 28, 1865, 
nothing was known, positively, to the scientific naturalist 
of the true nature of the horns of this very remarkable 

I proved, incontestably, the peculiar and unique con- 
dition of the shedding and the reproduction of the horns 
of this singular animal. 

It may appear strange and almost incredulous that, soon 
after my paper was read in America, the Smithsonian 
Institution, with its great reputation, should forward a 
letter to the Zoological Society with the extraordinary 
statement that they had had this letter in their possession 
for eight years, unnoticed and unpublished, detailing and 
describing all that I had stated without making the 
slightest allusion to what I had already settled. 

If there were any truth (which is much doubted) in the 
statement that Dr. Canfield had made the same discovery 



in 1858, and that his long and very interesting communi- 
cation had nevertheless been neglected and put aside for. 
nearly eight years, the officials of the Smithsonian Institu- 
tion would appear to have treated Dr. Canfield with very 
scant courtesy; unless they disbelieved his statements, 
and that it was only after my paper was published that 
they thought it worth while to notice them. 



This subject may be considered inexhaustible, but I 
intend to confine these remarks principally to carnivora 
or flesh-eaters, and herbivora or vegetable feeders, because 
the greatest and most striking difference in the habits are 
to be found in the animals forming these two groups or 

Taking for granted that everything has been done as 
regards kind treatment and feeding, and that suitable 
accommodation has been provided, the result is almost 
universally the opposite of what might be expected. 

Take, for instance, the young of any of the carnivora— 
lions, tigers, leopards, etc. — and pet them, they become 
tame and fond of those who feed and caress them, but if 
caught when adult it is extremely rare that they become 
tame enough to be caressed with safety. 

On the other hand, take the vegetable-feeding class, 
such as stags, antelopes, oxen, sheep, or goats ; obtain any 
of these from their birth and rear them by hand, and in 
all instances, with few exceptions, they become, when 
adult, the most savage and dangerous animals in exist- 
ence. At the same time, if these animals can be caught 
when adult they are timid, and fly from man. The reason 
of this appears to me very plain. In the case of pet stags 
and other horned animals reared as pets, never having 



had any fear of mankind in their infancy, they, on be- 
coming adult and assuming their natural habit of using 
their horns during the rutting season, fail then to dis- 
tinguish the hand that fed them, and, as war is in the 
nature of the creatures, they attack friends and foes un- 
mercifully. Hence the danger of keeping homed pets. 

My discovery of this was made after introducing to my 
children an unfortunate lamb a few days old. This 
motherless, harmless,, pretty creature at once became a 
most beloved and darling pet. The most devoted affection 
was bestowed upon it, and everything was done for its 
welfare and comfort. It prospered and did well, and the 
pride of the whole family was to think what kindness and 
attention had accomplished for this poor, deserted, and 
neglected creature. But, as time went on, the harmless 
little lamb got larger and stronger, and began to exhibit 
signs of independence, gradually but, undoubtedly, feeling 
able to take his own part — for it was of the male per- 
suasion, as Mark Twain says — and consequently had no 
fear and less gratitude, so that he occasionally made a 
rather unpleasant butt at the only and best friends he 
ever had, or was likely to have, and with very disagreeable 
results. His banishment soon followed. He was con- 
signed to a large field, and he became a terror to passing 
travellers who incautiously crossed the field. With a hop, 
skip, and jump he was behind any one in an instant ; with 
one good spring, the unfortunate traveller was on his 
hands and knees if not on his face. For this disagreeable 
and vicious habit the only cure that presented itself was 
the butcher, who ended the life of the pet lamb. This 
is my experience with nearly all tame-reared ruminants, 
whether oxen, stags, sheep, antelopes, or goats. 

Doubtless, individual differences occur, but, as a rule, 
there can be no question that these tamely-reared rumin- 



ants are far more to be feared than the timid wild ones. 
Another remarkable fact connected with these vegetable- 
feeding homed animals that have been bred in captivity 
(not petted and handled) and reared by the parent is that 
they are the wildest creatures in the world if anything is 
attempted to be done with them in the shape of catching, 
packing up, or moving them from one place to another. 

This may appear strange, but it is perfectly true, as 
long experience has proved. The reason is this, the 
animal, from the day of its birth, has been with its mother 
and accustomed to see, daily, any number of persons, feed- 
ing from their hands and appearing perfectly tame, but 
the moment anything is attempted to be done with the 
creature that is new to it, it takes fright, and dashes off, 
rushing madly against hurdles, fences, or anything in its 
way, frequently ending by breaking its neck or legs. In 
this the animal exhibits all its natural wildness, because, 
although it appeared to be perfectly tame and tame bred, 
it had never been tamed or interfered with, whereas all 
imported animals that have been caught, caged, and under- 
gone a sea voyage are so completely tamed that but little 
trouble is afterwards found in catching, packing, or moving 
them from place to place. 

Most animals appear to live in fear of man, and much 
mischief is done by alarming them. Many accidents occur 
from animals being frightened. Elephants, horses, and 
other animals are naturally timid, and, when alarmed, do 
great mischief in their frantic attempts to get away from 
that which alarmed them. One of the most important 
things to be done is to prevent their being alarmed. 

To those accustomed to pass much time among 
animals the influence of speaking to and kindly treating 
them is so well known that it is unnecessary to say any- 
thing upon this point, but to persons unacquainted with 



the subject it may appear strange that the wildest and, 
apparently, the most savage creatures very soon under- 
stand, as it were, the intention of those who speak kindly to, 
and make friends with, them, quite independently of feed- 
ing them, and this, of course, is the most powerful induce- 
ment by which the good feeling of hungry animals can 
be obtained. Nevertheless almost all animals quickly 
understand and recognize the difference in the sound of 
the voice, whether in anger or an expression of kindness, 
and it is impossible, or nearly so, to gain the confidence 
of wild or tame animals without speaking to them. The 
influence that may be acquired over the most powerful 
and savage member of the brute creation by the voice, alone, 
is perfectly marvellous. The keepers of dogs, horses, or 
other domestic animals full well know the truth of these 
remarks, and the same thing may be observed as regards 
wild animals. Much more might be said upon this 
interesting subject. 



The human nose that travels about in the "world, and 
notes the various kinds of smells, is probably aware that 
musk is found to predominate among animals. We find 
musk cats, musk rats, musk deer, musk ducks, musk bugs, 
musk beetles; in fact, this powerful scent is met with 
everywhere, even among reptiles and fishes. Many of 
these creatures are provided with glands and pouches or 
bags so arranged to receive and store up for use a large 
quantity of this extraordinary product, the smell of which 
must be highly agreeable to many creatures. But the 
question arises, What is the use of this overpowering 
smell ? Some animals who possess the glands and other 
organs similarly situated, secrete a scent so frightfully dis- 
gusting that they cannot be approached by man or other 
animal without suffering the most distressing nausea; 
insufferable is the stench of the common skunk of North 
America {Mephites Americana) ; many other animals have 
the power of exuding from their bodies the most offensive 
odours, by which means they escape their enemies. 
Among reptiles many serpents are able, when alarmed or 
injured, to so taint the air that those who inhale it are 
attacked with sickness or giddiness from its overpowering 
and unpleasant action. 

It may therefore be fairly assumed that these very 
remarkable and strong odours are not possessed altogether 



as pleasing and enticing means of calling together those 
of the opposite sex, as some writers have supposed, finding 
that in some instances the perfume is confined to the male 
sex (of which the musk deer is a good example). Nor 
can we determine that musk is the most abundant of all 
scents to be found in the animal world. It certainly 
appears so to us, but our powers of smelling are extremely 
limited as compared with many other animals. The 
sportsman in all countries becomes aware of his inferi- 
ority in this respect sooner than other persons, for he well 
knows the power of smell in animals — the extraordinary 
distance they detect, by the nose alone, the presence of an 
unwelcome visitor ; and this knowledge suggests the proba- 
bility that we are in ignorance of, and have not the power 
to discover, a multitude of different scents, odours, or 
perfumes, enjoyed and perceived by many of the lower 
animals. Take the dog, for instance. How readily he 
finds the spot that has been touched by the hand or foot 
of his master, and follows it up, and this in a crowded 
street or city, where hundreds of feet have been trampling 
over the same ground for hours before and after his 
master had passed. The dog, however, must not be looked 
upon as possessing the organ of smell developed to any- 
thing like the perfection to be found in some other 
animals. The delicacy of the olfactory nerves, the elabor- 
ate and almost complicated arrangement of the nasal organs 
met with in some animals, cannot fail to strike the com- 
parative anatomist with wonder and astonishment, on 
comparing these structures, and show him how insignificant 
and feeble are our means of ascertaining the nature of the 
objects by which we are surrounded, by the smell. Few 
animals will taste that which is not good for them. Most 
wild animals have the power of discriminating, by smelling, 
that kind of food suited to their wants, and by an almost 



or apparently supernatural means discover it. Not a 
little remarkable is the fact of training or educating the 
nose. The best and most easily-recognized examples of 
this kind are, perhaps, the dogs that have been trained 
to find truffles or other objects upon which they do not 
feed. That we possess this power, but in a limited degree, 
is obvious, and many singular instances can be adduced 
in the case of persons such as are known as judges 
of tea, wine, cheese, etc. They are generally called tasters ; 
the best judges however do not taste, but aire enabled by 
constant practice and training to discriminate, with 
wonderful accuracy, any particular flavour or kind by 
smell alone. 

The sense of smell, like sight and hearing, among our 
own species, is wonderfully varied, and it constantly 
happens that the individual most gifted in the one sense 
is deficient in one or more of the others, and we must 
admit our inferiority in all these senses as compared with 
the lower animals, for the sense of smell in man as com- 
pared with a dog sinks into insignificance. His sight, 
compared with an eagle or vulture, is equally feeble, and 
his power of hearing is duller than a barn owl. Never- 
theless, man has advantages that far outbalance these 
apparent deficiencies, because he can train or educate 
his nose, make telescopes and microscopes for his eyes, 
and hear all that he may require, and sometimes rather 
more. Now, apart from mere fancy, fashion, whim, or 
caprice, there can be no question or doubt that certain 
scents or perfumes are liked or disliked by different in- 
dividuals, and many very curious instances of this variable 
love of odours are to be met with. How fi-equently are 
those persons who keep pet dogs astonished to find their 
otherwise clean and well-behaved favourite enter the 
house, after having explored the dunghill or the dusthole, 



with the most abominable and stinking thing that could 
be found, either' in his or her month, or, still worse, be- 
daubed all over its body, having apparently enjoyed a 
good roll in the filth, often sufficiently strong to poison, 
or nearly so, the whole family. A dead and putrid pole- 
cat, stoat, or weasel, is almost sure to be thus favoured. 
The smell arising from some animals when at a great 
distance may be very agreeable to some persons who are 
horrified by it in close proximity. This is particularly 
noticeable with regard to musk, and the persons engaged 
in obtaining the pod, as it is called, from the musk deer 
suffer severely during the time they are engaged collect- 
ing it. 

A singular instance of this nature occurred to a young 
man in London some years since, when dogs were more 
plentiful than at present. He had removed from the 
carcass of a dead civet cat the bag or glands containing 
the musk, and thinking to turn the perfume to account, 
after rolling the parts up in paper, placed them in his 
pocket and went his way. The first dog he met followed 
him closely, and was soon joined by others, until he was 
obliged to seek refuge in a public-house. All his kicks 
and attempts to drive them off failed, and until he pro- 
cured a long whip he was in danger of being attacked by 
the mongrel lot that followed him. He and his clothes 
became so saturated with the odour that for some time 
he could not venture out in the streets without a whip 
to keep the dogs off. In the end he was obliged to destroy 
his clothes, as his friends and family could not remain 
in his company, the stench was so abominable. Probably 
the animal from which he obtained the bag was diseased, 
and the secretion unhealthy or abnormal. It certainly 
was not agreeable to himself or to any who came in con- 
tact with him, except, perhaps, the dogs that followed after 



him, and even they, perhaps, like their fellows who rolled 
in the muck, only wanted to perfume their jackets — there 
is no accounting for taste. That we should seek some 
powerful perfume, and that the extensive use of scents 
should be almost universal, is not a matter of surprise, 
because, imperfect as our nasal organs may be, to those 
whose habits of cleanliness are as part of their existence, 
when mixing with a crowd of their own species who 
neglect or seem to prefer remaining unwashed, the almost 
painful sensation and consciousness of filth is intolerable, 
and the highly-sensitive person cannot help feeling de- 
graded at being compelled to remain in an atmosphere 
that almost stifles and chokes him. 



Apropos of horse-dealing, Mr. , a dealer in rabbits, 

guinea-pigs and pigeons, who was in the habit of supplying 
the Gardens with these articles of food for the animals, 
knowing that a great number of horses also are required, 
felt that he could extend his business by supplying horses 
as well as other small fry. 

He thought to secure, in time, the patronage of the 
Society, and then provide all the live stock used as food 
for the animals in the collection. 

His first attempt was, for him, rather an unfortunate 
speculation. He appeared one morning at my gate with 
his first equine specimen, a poor, miserable, bony pony. 
I at once told him it was not good enough for our 
purposes, and he was much astonished when I refused to 
have it at any price. He appealed to me by saying that it 
was the first transaction of the kind he had ever attempted, 
that he had kept the pony for a fortnight, had fed it 
well in the hopes of fattening it, and that it had cost him 
altogether about fifty shillings. Of course it was qiaite 
optional on my part to believe this statement, and, turning 
a deaf ear to his entreaties, I ordered him to take it away, 
as I would not allow it to come into the Gardens, even as 
a gift. A few days after he came with a supply of guinea- 
pigs and pigeons, which I bought of him at the usual price 
commonly paid for such commodities. After I had settled 
with him, and he was leaving, I felt a little curious to 
know what had become of his valuable pony. " Well," said 



he, " I sent my boy with it to the knacker's in Maiden 
Lane, and told him to sell it for the most he could get." 
" Then,'' said I, " you have sold it all right ? " and he 
answered yes. 

Thinking he looked rather dejected, I said, " Now, what 
did you get for it ? " " Well," said he, "you would hardly 
believe it, the boy brought me back eighteenpence. This 
is my first and last attempt to become a horse-dealer." 

In my experience it was the cheapest living pony of 
which I had ever heard. 



Of all the animals in the world none inspire mankind 
with so much loathsome horror and dread as the scrpc^nt. 
Both ancient and modern writers speak of thcun with 
feelings of hatred and disgust. 

"The serpent that did sting thy father's life now wears his 
crown." SnAKKHi'KAitK. 

Fur many years it has b(;en part of my duty to study, 
and thereby to become aorjuaintcd with, anirriiils of this 
class, and it has been most int(;r(^sting to mo to learn the 
amount of power some of thom poss(;ss to destroy the life 
of the creature they attack. 

Sorrio of the following narratives will explain the dangf^r 
to which many persons unacrpuiinted with the subject 
may be exposfjd, by incautiously handling or approaching 
too near to these much-dreaded reptiles. 

The poisonous seq)ents are more to be feared, notwith- 
standing their smaller size, than the monstrous oonsirioting 
serpents, as the latter are more (jasily avoided, and, 
moreover, they are less numerous than the smaller hann- 
less or non-poisonous kinds. 

Many of the small poisonous sjjocies, as well fw some of 
the large and powerful kinds, are abundant in moist and 
gloomy tropical forests, whf:re they hide on the branches 
of tiees concealed by the thick foliage, from which they 
dart upon the unwary ; nor are they absent from the plains 



and deserts. The most dreaded snakes, on account of their 
venomous character, are found lurking just beneath the 
surface of the sand, the colour of the snakes so closely 
resembling the surrounding objects that even if they were 
not buried they could easily be overlooked by the un- 
practised eye ; while others, like the cobra and hamadryad, 
hold their own in the bamboo hedges and clumps of 
bamboo so conspicuous in all Eastern countries. In these 
clumps (especially in gardens) they are very plentiful, no 
doubt attracted by the rats and mice which keep generally 
near large towns and houses. The stranger who finds 
himself suddenly located among these obnoxious and 
dangerous snakes is naturally filled with apprehension, 
and forced to regard them with abhorrence and aversion ; 
therefore, it cannot be a matter of surprise that these 
reptiles should inspire the mind with feelings of fear, and 
the horror and dread of death through such creatures 
appear to justify our natural repugnance towards them. 


My friend J wrote me that he had a monster in 

the shape of a boa-constrictor. What its length was in 
his imagination I now forget, but on seeing it I found it 
t)f large size, and thought it probably 18 ft. to 20 ft. long. 

Not intending to purchase the animal, and seeing 
several sore places on its skin, I was induced to ask some 
questions about its history, and the following statement 
I have every reason to believe to be perfectly true. 

J said that the captain who brought home the 

serpent expected a large sum of money for it. The animal 
hatl been confined in a long chest in the ship's hold, and 
had not been looked at since it was caught and placed in 


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I gave him some good advice, and told him the danger 
to which he had exposed himself and his fellow passengers 
by train and omnibus. I explained to him the best 
method of catching and bringing to me the next one he 
found, but I never saw any more of him, so I am inclined 
to suppose he failed to capture the second cobra. 

I may add that the one I bought was a fine, strong, and 
poisonous beast, and lived several years in captivity. No 
doubt this animal had fed, while on board ship, upon the 
rats and mice it could easily find there. 

My friend Mr. Frank Buckland saw the snake and heard 
my story, and begged me to let him have the old ragged 
bag as a curiosity for his museum. 


Previous to the death of the man Girling, who was killed 
many years since by the bite of a cobra in the Gardens, I 
had been in the habit of removing the broken fangs and 
attending to the diseased state of the mouths of poisonous 
serpents. In the Gardens serpents are frequently troubled 
by abscesses and tumours in the jaws, which are generally 
caused through injury. With the assistance of Girling I 
had no fear in handling them. It is, of course, dangerous 
work, and requires some skill and great care ; but after the 
inquest on Girling, Mr. Thomas Wakley, who was coroner 
at the time, made me promise not again to risk my life 
by depending upon any assistant, in case he might 
behave like the man Girling, who in a drunken fit killed 
himself, or rather allowed the serpent to bite him. The 
occurrence is related on a previous page. I have 
endeavoured to keep my promise, and avoid handling 
these deadly creatures. 

Since that time I have frequently had occasion to 



handle serpents that were harmless or said to be so. I 
well remember an instance of this supposed harmless- 
ness. Two snakes were brought to the Gardens and 
handed to me as being perfectly harmless and tame ; the 
person who had them allowed them to crawl round his 
neck and creep up his coat-sleeves, and to all appearance 
he could handle them just as he pleased. As the species 
was unknown to me I put them into a bag and carried 
them to the British Museum in order to obtain their 
proper names. I accordingly introduced them to Dr. 
Giinther, taking them out of the bag and handling them 
with perfect confidence. The Doctor took one of them 
and allowed it to crawl round his arm, and I, equally 
confident of the creature's good behaviour, did the same 
with the other one. Dr. Giinther, not feeling quite sure 
that the species was non-poisonous, obtained from one of 
the published works in the Museum a description of the 
species, and, on reading the account given of it, found it 
was stated to be poisonous. We looked a little uncomfort- 
able, and the doctor suggested that we had better return 
them to the bag. To this I quite agreed, and in en- 
deavouring to do so they became spiteful ; the one I held 
bit me, so I let it fall on the floor. To my surprise the 
Doctor had been similarly treated by the one he held. 
We laughed, and both thought it judicious and worth 
while to suck our wounded fingers or thumbs. We 
also inquired of each other if any particular sensations 
were felt. Fortunately we experienced no inconvenience, 
and, therefore, came to the conclusion that the bite was 
harmless, and that the species was easily offended and 
objected to be thrust into the bag. 




The following letter appeared in Zand and Water, 
June 16, 1877, from a correspondent in Venezuela, giving 
an account of an enormous serpent that existed in the 
neighbourhood of Maturin. The account was to my mind 

" Caraccas, Venezuela, 
"April 16, 1877. 

" I saw an interesting account of an anaconda you have in 
the Zoological Gardens, which appears to be considered of 
immense proportion. 

" In the Eastern States and in the small rivers which flow into 
the Orinoco there are large numbers, much larger than the one 
the Society has. About two leagues from a friend's house at 
Maturin there is one living in a large pond, whose length is 
little short of 36 ft., and about a yard in diameter. My friend, 
Mr. G. F. Tucker, would no doubt be happy to give you 
further information, as he is desirous, and has been trying for 
some time past, to catch the reptile alive, which is very difficult, 
it being very shy. My friend has only seen his full length on 
two occasions, when he was able to take a fair measurement." 

As I thought there could be no harm in taking notice of 
the statements, I accordingly wrote the following reply : — 

" Should Mr. Cooke succeed in sending to England a living 
serpent of the dimensions given in his letter, I can assure him, 
if the animal arrives in anything like good condition, it would 
realize at least £500." 

To this I received no answer. One day, however, a 
gentleman, whom, judging by his style and dress, I took 
to be a missionary, called at my office and asked to see 
me. " Are you Mr. Bartlett ? " said he, at the same time 
looking excited and angry. I replied, " I am that indi- 

" You may perhaps call to mind that you wrote a letter 
in Land and Water offering £500 for a large serpent ? " 



" Oh yes," I replied, " and glad I shall be to get the 

My visitor looked very straight at me. " Do you mean to 
say that you ever expected to get a serpent of that size ? " 

" You will excuse me, but I must say I had as good a 
right to offer £500 for such a serpent as the author of the 
letter describing such a monster had to publish the 
account of it." 

" Well, all I can say is, that your letter did me a very 
great deal of mischief, and warmed me up considerably ; in 
fact, I had to leave the place in consequence. I only wrote 
to my friend as a joke, but the matter ended very seriously 
for me," and without further remark he departed. 


The constant supply of instances of the occurrence of 
death from snake bites, and the continued reference to 
the wonderful recoveries by the application of innumer- 
able remedies, or so-called antidotes, form an everlasting 
source of contention, and give rise to endless disputes. 
This cannot be regarded as anything very remarkable, 
considering the extensive range this extremely difficult 
subject has, and the multiplicity of circumstances and 
varied nature of the matter for thought and study that 
are frequently presented by a host of witnesses whose 
evidence and testimony aj^ipear from time to time undouhted, 
as they would be upon almost any other of our human affairs. 
But the matter under consideration requires a more strict 
and careful inquiry, which can only be fully made by those 
who have by actual practice become acquainted with the 

There is a certain longing or desire not too quickly to 
abolish and banish from our thoughts a long-established 



and strong belief, and those who come forward with that 
intention may be allowed to cry — 

" Despair thy charm." 

In taking up this subject the writer must ask the 
reader's consideration of the following mode of treating 
the conflicting statements and disputed points published 
in various works. Now suppose a man or other animal is 
bitten by a well-known venomous serpent, by what test or 
means can we ascertain that the man or animal so wounded 
has received the poison in sufficient quantity to destroy life ? 

It is well known that these creatures often inflict severe 
wounds that are not poisoned, but the shock received on 
the infliction is sufficient to produce, especially upon a 
nervous organization, an amount of alarm and consequent 
derangement so as to give the appearance of actual poison. 
Well-recorded instances are not wanting to show that 
persons bitten by serpents destitute of poison have died 
from the effect of the bite. Some years ago a keeper in 
the Zoological Gardens in Dublin was bitten by one of 
the harmless boas, and the terror that ensued, together 
with a somewhat shattered constitution, proved fatal 
in a few hours, in spite of every aid that was promptly 
afforded by the most skilful medical men in attendance 
upon him. There is nothing to justify us in supposing 
that man only is capable of this panic-stricken alarm at 
being wounded by a serpent. Let any one who has wit- 
nessed the battles that take place between snake-eating 
animals and their prey say, if he can, that the victims 
exhibit no fear and are careless of the bites of the snakes. 
To say so would prove that such person is not a trust- 
worthy observer. 

It is true that the ichneumon will rush, sometimes, upon 
the snake so eagerly that he gets wounded, but its most 
frequent and certain mode of proceeding is with caution, and 



by a quick dart, either upon the head or neck of the snake 
disable the reptile at one bite. The oft-repeated nonsense 
of the ichneumon finding a remedy for the cure of the 
poison is now nearly exploded ; the fact is, that the 
ichneumon dies if the poison is administered to the 
wound in sufficient quantity. These facts are now well 
established by some of the best, most competent, and 
undoubted authorities. 

When a large and powerful poisonous serpent strikes a 
small animal, the blow is struck with the swiftness of an 
electric shock, the wounded and poisoned animal is in- 
stantly paralyzed, and frequently dies in less than thirty 
seconds. Having disposed, for the time, of the supposed 
remedy of the ichneumon and the imagined immunity of 
this animal from the effects of the poison, let us take a 
further step into this very difficult and always dangerous 
and unpleasant subject for investigation. How few persons 
can be found who are sufficiently acquainted with the 
subject, and have the requisite knowledge and determina- 
tion to enter fully and fairly into the inquiry ; for in all 
countries there exists a superstitious dread of snakes, and 
it is extremelj' rare to find any one, not interested in taking 
advantage of the fears or credulity of his fellows, who 
would be able or skilful enough to catch and handle the 
most poisonous serpents fresh from their native haunts. 
Certainly not one person in twenty thousand ; and unless 
this could be done, we are reduced to believe the crafty and 
designing rascals known as snake charmers, catchers, etc. 
To such people, the handling of snakes — even the most 
deadly — is a very easy and simple amusement. As before 
stated, how few persons could be induced to touch or 
examine closely a creature that, by a slight stroke from its 
tooth, might produce almost instant death ! 

I must confess to having, in former years, practised, in 


search for knowledge, this dangerous custom, without fear 
or injury; and, from this experience, I have learned to 
know the power they possess, and the difficulty of ascer- 
taining when they will or will not use it. 

Depend upon it there are some species that have the 
power of inflicting a poisoned wound which is so instan- 
taneous in its action that it ensures certain death, not 
only to any small animal, but to our own species ; but the 
circumstances may vary to so great an extent, not only as 
to the condition of the serpent, but also to the state of the 
creature wounded, that the wound may be severe and the 
poison trifling, or the wound may be trifling and the poison 

Endless theories have been started. Pigs are supposed 
to be able to withstand the poison ; it is possible the poison 
may not reach the parts that would be affected by it — 
the fat akin may save its bacon, or the hog may be the 
aggressor, and, by attacking the snakes, startle them and 
thus destroy them with impunity : for bear in mind these 
much-dreaded poisonous serpents are loth to come forward 
— if you want them you must seek them; they always 
endeavour to escape, and unless injured or hard pressed, 
or accidentally come upon, keep out of the way. 

There cannot be a doubt that a large number of the 
deaths recorded as attributable to snake-bites, if fairly and 
correctly ascertained, are due to causes not suspected. 

The conclusion I have arrived at with reference to 
the poison of the larger species is simply that, in severe 
cases, its action is so rapid and fatal that all remedies are 
futile, and that a vast number of cases of injury are at 
once taken in hand ; and in the case of but a small quantity 
of the poison (or perhaps none at all) having been received, 
the sufferer recovers, and a wonderful cure is announced 

; 2V2 



Some time ago I purchased a large anaconda for the 
Zoological Society's Gardens. 

Some two or three weeks after being safely deposited 
in the reptile-house it voided a mass of feathers, a few 
bones and grain, together with a large brass hook (not 
barbed) 4 to 5 in. in length, and 2 J in. broad, i. e. from 
point to shaft, and with a portion of line attached. I can 
only suppose that a bird, the curassow, had been used 
as a bait, and, in all probability, was the means of the 
successful capture of the anaconda. 

The curassow is the size of a large capon fowl, and it is 
impossible to say whether the bird was used living or 
dead for the purpose of securing the snake; it is not 
however probable that the beast would have taken a 
dead bird. 

Upon one occasion a newly-imported anaconda was 
received at the Gardens. There was soon after found a 
quantity of voided excreta, which, after being carefully 
examined, was found to contain a quantity of coarse black 
hair, with a few portions of bones and some teeth ; these 
remains proved to have belonged to a young spider 

A similar circumstance was noted upon another occasion, 
while examining a deceased anaconda. In this case the 
hair, teeth, and other remains were sa,tisfactorily shown 
to have belonged to a young capabara. The capabara is 
a very great frequenter of the streams and rivers in South 
America where the anaconda is generally found. 




The first Russell's viper I ever saw alive was presented to 
the Zoological Society by an officer on board a steamship 
from Ceylon. 

This gentleman told me that the snake had been given 
to him as perfectly tame and harmless, and that, from 
time to time, he had removed it from its cage and allowed 
it to crawl about upon the mess-table for the amusement 
of those on board. It happened, however, that one day 
a chicken escaped from the coop on deck and flew on to 
the cabin-table ; it was instantly struck at by this, said 
to be, harmless snake. The chicken fell paralyzed and 
died in a few minutes, to the great consternation of all 
who witnessed the occurrence. The owner, with great 
caution, managed to secure his former pet in its cage, and 
was very thankful that, by this accidental discovery, no 
serious mishap had occurred. On arriving in London he 
presented it to the Society, and it was considered, by 
those who had paid attention to the subject, to be one of 
the most deadly of snakes. 


Soon after the cobra had been eaten by the water- 
viper, as told in a previous page, an Egyptian cobra, 
measuring 5 ft. 6 in., escaped in a similar manner, i. e. 
by a hole gnawed through the bottom of the case by 
a common house mouse, but this time the cobra got 
loose in the building, which fact was not discovered 
by the keeper until the evening. This was a more 
serious matter than the previous one, because the reptile 
was at large, and I was at my wits' end to know what 



was best to be done. Night coming on, search was 
out of the question, so I closed the building with the 
intention of searching for the brute in the morning. In 
the meantime I told the watchman to keep a good look- 



out all night in case it should have escaped out of the 
house into the Gardens, but, at the same time, I cautioned 
him as regards keeping the affair a secret. Some time 
afterwards I met him with his legs bound up in hay-bands 
{see Sketch). 

At daylight I called my eldest son, Edward, to bring 
his collecting gun and prepare to kill the cobra, if possible. 
We all (my son, the keepers and I) entered the reptile- 
house and closed the doors and windows, because we 



suspected that the fugitive would be hiding among the 
boxes and cages, which were all mixed up under the glass 
cases containing snakes, i. e. ranged along each side of the 
room. I placed the men at all corners of the room, and 
one was told off to pull out the empty boxes one by one 
with a long-handled hook, each man being on his knees 
so as to catch sight of the snake, if there. After a few 
boxes had been moved, sure enough there he, or she, was 
coiled up between two boxes. I immediately told my son 
Edward to shoot it, and he was obliged to lie down in 
order to get a shot at it. I am thankful to say the 
shot took effect and released all present from a most 
embarrassing position. 




The first specimen of the species of cassowary (the moo- 
ruli) to which this paper has reference was received in the 
Zoological Society's Gardens on May 17, 1857, and subse- 
quently other specimens have been added to the collection. 
In 1858 a pair of these birds was obtained, in 1864 they 
bred and two fine young birds were reared. The female 
lays three or four eggs of a very beautiful pea-green colour, 
and the male (as is the case with all the members of the 
Strathiones) performs the task of incubation, a very serioiis 
matter with him, considering that he must be constantly, 
on duty for seven weeks, at the end of which period the 
young are hatched, and very prettily-striped chicks are 
the young cassowaries. They are attended and brooded 
by the male bird only, the female not being allowed to 
approach them, nor does she appear to exhibit any care or 
anxiety about them. 

There are two facts with regard to the Struthiones of 
very peculiar interest. The first is, that the ostriches of 
Africa and America lay white eggs, while the emus and 
cassowaries of the Indian Archipelago and Australia lay 
green eggs ; the second is the peculiarity in the struc- 
ture of the feathers in each case. For instance, in all 
the known species that lay green eggs two distinct 
feathers grow from one quill, while the species that produce 
white eggs have only a single plume on each quill. Now 



this is extremely remarkable in the case of the apteryx, as 
geographically and anatomically the apteryx is classed 
with the emus and cassowaries, yet we find the apteryx 
has the single feather to each quill and lays white eggs. 
How far is this bird, then, really removed from those with 
which it has been so closely associated ? May we account 
for the eggs of the apteryx being white by the fact that 
they are deposited in a hole or burrow in the earth, and 
being, like the eggs of most birds, such as parrots, king- 
fishers, bee-eaters, woodpeckers, etc., laid in the dark, either 
in banks or holes, in trees or other dark places, are found 
to be white ? 

We are, however, reminded of the extinct gigantic 
dinornis of New Zealand, the remains of which have 
shown that it belonged to the family of the Struthiones 
that grew two feathers from one quill, and consequently, 
if we may venture an opinion, laid green eggs ; from its 
immense size it would be unreasonable to expect this bird 
to scratch a hole in the ground sufficiently large to admit 
of depositing white eggs in a dark place. 


I had the opportunity of examining one of these species 
on February 14, 1861. There were present upon this occa- 
sion Dr. Sclater, Dr. Giinther, and E. W. H. Holdsworth, Esq. 
This bird was a fine large male, not an old bird, but pro- 
bably in the second year, the whiskers being somewhat 
developed. The most careful examination made by the 
above-named gentlemen and myself failed to discover any 
opening under the tongue. Being perfectly satisfied upon 
this point an incision was made in the skin beginning 
at the corner of the mouth, and, as in the former bird 



examined, we found an abundance of the delicate mem- 
branes spread over the fore-part of the neck and throat. 
By inserting the end of a blow-pipe any number of cells 
could be inflated, and by the application of a little force 
the walls of these cells would give way, and thus form one 
cavity or several large cavities or bags. During this ex- 
amination a discussion took place, with reference to the 
means by which these membranes were distended by the 
bird during life, whether by muscular dilatation or by in- 
flation, and I must admit that this part of the subject has 
since appeared to me to require more consideration than 
I at first thought it deserved. I observed the wonderful 
enlargement that takes place in the wattles, etc., of many 
birds, as, for instance, the wattles of the Talegalla, or Bush- 
turkey, which distend and contract with great rapidity ; a 
similar condition is observable in the common turkey and 
many other birds. A very wonderful example of this kind I 
have perceived in the male ostrich when under the influence 
of intense excitement during the early part of the breeding 
season. The bird will squat upon the ground, extend his 
wings, and spread them to the full extent, showing the 
white plumes, his neck enlarged to an enormous size and 
becoming quite red ; in this state it is rolled with his head 
from side to side on his body, the wings alternately rising 
and falling rapidly with the violent motion of the head and 
neck, the bird appearing perfectly unconscious of your 
approach during this extraordinary emotion. As I have 
previously remarked, it is somewhat doubtful to me by 
what means these changes are produced. I think it may 
be well worthy of further investigation. But to continue 
my subject, on February 21, 1861, another fine male 
Great Bustard was examined by me, about the same age as 
the last, and with precisely the same result as before. The 
conclusion at which I arrive appears to me the only means 


of explaining the existence of a pouch in the fore part of 
the neck, etc., in some of the old male birds of this species, 
viz. that some of the membranes in this part of the bird 
have become ruptured by the excessive enlargement that 
takes place during the violent paroxysms to which the 
males are subject on the approach of the breeding season; 
I have seen them with throats enlarged to an extraordinary 
extent, the pinions of the wings lowered to the ground, 
while the points of the primaries are crossed over their 
backs, and in this distorted state they rush on and attack 
each other, giving one reason to imagine that these delicate 
membranes at such a moment may give way and produce 
the abnormal condition so often alluded to as being found 
m old males. As a further proof of the probability of this 
being the true explanation, I call attention to the great 
difference in size and form of the so-called pouches, as 
given by different observers. 

The fluid contained in the pouch would also be thus 
fully accounted for, if my hypothesis be correct. 


The AfUryx Oivenii. — As its name carries with it one 
of which every Englishman ought to be proud, we feel 
called upon to give rather a full account in the first notice 
of this singular family of wingless birds. Captain Barclay, 
of the ship Providence, brought from New Zealand, about 
the year 1812, the skin of a bird which Dr. Shaw, the 
naturalist and ornithologist of that day, figured and de- 
scribed as the Apteryx aitstralis in the Nahcralist's Mis- 
cellany. After the death of Dr. Shaw the specimen passed 
into the possession of the late Earl of Derby, whose fine 
collection now belongs to the town of Liverpool, having 



been bequeathed to it by his lordship. For many years 
(nearly twenty) this unique specimen was lost sight of, 
and few naturalists at home or abroad believed in the 
existence of a bird of the kind. Its history remained 
in this state until the year 1833, when the late Mr. 
Yarrell published, in the Zoological Society's Transactions, 
•A paper giving all that was at that time known respecting 
this remarkable bird. On June 8, 1867, Mr. Gould 
brought before the meeting of the Zoological Society a 
skin of a second species of this interesting genus, and 
this he described and named, as a just compliment to 
Professor Owen, under the name Apteryx Owcnii. In 
1850 the late Dr. Mantell received from his son, Mr. 
Walter Mantell, the skin of an apteryx; this he placed 
in my hands, with a request to examine and report vipon 
it. I at once pronounced it to be unlike any of the speci- 
mens of Apteryx australis in the British Museum or other 
collection known by the name, and at once wrote to the 
late Earl Derby, who kindly sent the original specimen 
from Knowsley to London for the purpose of having it 
compared with the specimen sent home by Mr. Walter 
Mantell. Mr. Bartlett at once identified these two birds 
as the same species, and at a meeting of the Zoological 
Society, December 10, 1850, brought the subject forward, 
and named the more common species (of which specimens 
were found in the British and other museums) Apteryx 
Mantelli, in compliment to that gentleman. 

The importance of observing and of collecting all the 
evidence in our power respecting these singular and ex- 
piring races of birds cannot be too frequently urged, for 
doubtless in a few years hence the work of extermina- 
tion will be complete. The mighty Dinornis and its 
smaller allies are probably long since numbered with the 
dead, and we are reduced to confine our observations of 



the living representatives of this group or family of 
Struthiones, to the remaining species of Apteryx, and since 
the introduction into New Zealand of cats, dogs, and pigs, 
many of these latter having become wild in the bush, the 
Apteryx, like the Dodo of old, must rapidly disappear. 

We have here an illustration of the value of possessing 
living examples of rare and little-known animals, for with- 
out the opportunity of testing the truth or accuracy of 
the reports of native and other careless observers, many 
fabulous and absurd remarks are introduced to us, and 
for the want of knowledge we are led to believe them. 

In appearance the bird is about the size of a common 
fowl, the body is as round as a Dutch cheese, the bill is 
white, about 3 in. long, the eyes small and black, the 
plumage soft and hairlike, of a pale silvery grey, finely 
barred with darker grey. The legs and toes are white, 
or pale flesh colour, and about the size of those of a 
common fowl. 



REEVES'S (or barbed-tailed PHEASANTS). 

We have thoroughly acclimatized the common pheasant 
from Western Asia, the ring-necked pheasant from Southern 
China, the green-breasted pheasant from Japan, then why 
not the Reeves's pheasant from North China ? It is cer- 
tainly the largest, finest, and most beautiful of all the true 
pheasants, and would be a most desirable and magnificent 
addition to our game preserves. 

Domestication and acclimatization are two very different 
states. Animals may be acclimatized without, in the least, 
becoming domesticated, and the animals already domesti- 
cated may be acclimatized, that is to say, we may trans- 
port the domesticated animals to a new country, and, with 
proper attention to their wants, we may succeed in estab- 
lishing them, and they are in time adapted to the changed 
condition and thrive ; instances of this kind are common 
enough, viz. sheep, cattle, pigs, and poultry in Australia ; 
horses, cattle, and pigs in America and elsewhere. The 
introduction of animals from one country to another is 
very common, and the success attending such introduction 
well known. But when the question is asked, Have any 
wild species that have been introduced into a country 
become domesticated within the time of recorded events ? 
an answer in the negative must be given ; on the other 
side, we have no end of instances of domestic animals being 
introduced to new countries, where, for want of care and 



attention, they have attained a perfectly wild state, yet 
nevertheless exhibit the stamp of domestic variation and 
a tendency to return, under proper treatment, to their 
former condition. We need only point to the horses of 
South America, to the sheep and cattle in Australia, and 
to the pigs and cats in New Zealand, in support of what 
we advance. 

China must be regarded as the country the people of 
which have succeeded in obtaining and breeding domestic 
animals as an article of food far in advance of any other 
nation. They have the most prolific sheep that produce 
four and, sometimes, five at a birth, geese that lay and 
hatch all the year round, and pigs that produce four or 
five-and-twenty at a time, most of which, under the watch- 
ful care of these thrifty and careful people, are reared. 
We may naturally infer that those animals most subject 
to variation and most capable of conforming to changed 
conditions, were those selected for domestication, and that 
as a probable result the wild ones, belonging to the species 
that were taken under the protection of man, became 
amalgamated with the semi-domesticated individuals, 
until they ceased to exist as wild animals ; hence the 
present difficulty of fixing or determining upon the wild 
origin of nearly all our domestic animals. Among deer, 
the reindeer is the only species that has shown a capability 
of being domesticated, and in a wild state it exhibits a 
wonderful amount of variation, not only in size, but in 
colour and habits, therefore clearly indicating the success 
that has been attributed to the Laplander, but which is, 
in all probability, far more ancient than this race of people 
— -witness the very numerous remains of this animal's 
bones, associated with the traces of man, found in the 
ancient caverns of Mid Europe. There is every reason to 
believe that the reindeer will be preserved in a domestic 



condition long after it has ceased to exist as a wild animal, 
owing to the rate at which these animals are being destroyed 
in Greenland, as stated by Dr. Hayes, and also by Mr. R. 
Brown in a paper published in the Zoological Society's Pro- 
ceedings, May 28, 1868, p. 352. He says, " They are 
slaughtered indiscriminately by the natives, these improvi- 
dent people, in nine cases out of ten, leaving the hides 
and flesh, and only taking the tongues." The fallow deer 
makes a near approach to the condition of a domestic 
animal, but fails to become perfectly so. 

Many species of deer are brought from Asia and America, 
and thrive in Europe and Australia ; antelopes from Africa 
and Asia thrive in Europe and Australia, and among birds 
from Asia we have pea-fowl, pheasants, ducks, and geese, 
of many species, acclimatized in Europe, but not one known 
case have we of either of the above-mentioned mammals 
or birds ever having been domesticated; while, on the 
other hand, we may import wild animals and acclimatize 
them — that is, breed from them, and rear their progeny 
without the slightest chance of bringing them (the progeny) 
under domestication. 

Animals to become domesticated must be of those kinds 
which are easily changed, and subject to great variety 
amongst themselves — in fact, of a plastic nature. 

What has been done towards domesticating the peacock 
or guinea-fowl in this country amounts to literally or really 
nothing. It is ti'ue that they are acclimatized and breed 
freely here, but they are anything but what may fairly be 
called domesticated birds ; certainly they are not so wild 
as pheasants, and although these will when bred tame feed 
from the hand, like common fowls, yet they cannot be 
called domesticated. That efforts are made all over the 
world to tame and domesticate wild animals — and doubt- 
less our species always were aiming at that object — there 



is every reason to lead us to believe, as the larger part of 
the domestic animals now known were domesticated long 
before our race became in any way civilized. Have not 
the various races of men that we please to call savages, at 
the present time, pets and domestic animals about them ? 
And do they not in many countries keep large numbers of 
them as a means for subsistence and for trading? Animals, 
such as deer or antelopes, that are bred in confinement, 
are, of all creatures, the wildest should anything cause them 
to be alarmed. It is a well-known and authenticated fact 
to all who have had experience in the breeding and rear- 
ing of animals, not domesticated, that they are in their 
houses or paddocks perfectly tame, and that they will come 
even to a call, feed out of a person's hand, and will 
probably allow themselves to be stroked by those whom 
they know. Should, however, anything new or strange 
be placed near one of these animals, or an attempt be 
made to remove one to another locality, the animal in an 
instant becomes alarmed, its fear knows no bounds, its 
whole strength and determination exhibit themselves, and 
its wild disposition at once returns ; in a word, it is trans- 
formed from an apparently perfectly tame beast, into one 
of the most uncontrollable of wild animals. 

The difficulties and dangers attendant upon the catch- 
ing and transporting wild animals of this class are known 
but to few persons. The cause is, however, by no means 
beyond comprehension. We will assume, as an instance, 
that a pair of antelopes are imported from Africa. Before 
they were shipped for this country they had been caught and 
tamed. Large numbers die in the process, and it is only 
occasionally that the people who attempt or undertake to 
tame them succeed. The animals are then confined in a 
small space and sent on board ship. Out of a large number 
shipped but few survive the voyage, and those that reach 



England are so completely tamed and subdued that their 
original wildness and determination never return. So 
thoroughly subdued are they, so used to almost every kind 
of noise, of sight, and of change of condition, that they 
continue manageable all the rest of their lives. It is not 
so, however, with their offspring, which are produced in 
what we please to call a state of domestication. In most 
instances the breeding, in captivity, of wild animals is at- 
tended with considerable difficulty and risk, consequently 
the young are regarded and treated in the most gentle and 
kindest manner. You must not do the slightest thing to 
frighten or annoy them. You look at them, talk kindly, 
pet and feed them with the best and most tempting of 
food, and they appear perfectly tame and fond of being fed 
and caressed, but only let some trifling strange thing 
happen, sometimes the appearance of an umbrella or any- 
thing moving in the bushes, or a boy's kite in the air, and 
away goes all the tameness at a moment's notice, the 
creature rushes at the fence, and, if possible, breaks its 
neck or legs, or, in its frantic alarm, breaks loose by either 
smashing the fence or leaping over it, and not unfrequently 
is so injured that it either kills itself or is obliged to be 
killed. The simple truth is, that the wild and vigorous 
natures of these animals manifest themselves only under 
the influence of fear ; endless instances in support of the 
above have occurred in this country and on the continent ; 
in fact, wherever wild animals have been bred in captivity, 
the vexatious losses which those who, after years of trouble, 
meet with in an instant, are most trying and dis- 

Another fact with reference to tame-bred or artificially- 
reared animals is well worthy of mention. No animal is 
more dangerous than one that has been reared by hand, 
whether it be a bull, a stag, or a ram ; having no fear of 
man, woman, or child, at the season when the animal 



becomes adult he is liable without notice to attack and 
kill, or much injure, the persons who have petted and 
reared him. 


A few remarks upon the breeding and rearing of the 
young of the various kinds of game birds and of domestic 
fowls may, at this season of year, be acceptable to those of 
our readers who are interested in the subject. 

Although most breeders, especially gamekeepers, know, 
or profess to know, everything required to attain success 
in those matters, yet it is a notorious fact that a vast 
number of them naeet with disastrous failures, through 
causes quite unforeseen by, and unknown to, those who 
pretend to be so thoroughly acquainted with the subject, 
that, according to their ideas, to be unsuccessful would be 
an impossibility. 

Of all diseases that prove fatal to the young of the 
gallinaceous birds none is more to be feared and to be 
guarded against than that commonly called the gapes. 
This troublesome disorder is so well known that it does 
not require more than a passing remark. It is caused by 
the existence of a parasitic worm in the trachea or wind- 
pipe of the chick. The attempts of the unfortunate bird to 
expel, by coughing or sneezing, this leech-like bloodsucker 
are most distressing, and the increased size or numbers of 
the worms so obstruct the breathing of the bird that it 
dies partly from its exhausted state and partly from the 
complete obstruction in the breathing or air passages. 

There is scarcely a gamekeeper in the kingdom who has 
not a certain cure for this fell complaint, and many pro- 
fess to know at least half-a-dozen perfect remedies, but, 
like most quacks, when applying any one of them, it 
fails to effect a cure, and the death of the patient is 
attributed to some other cause. 



Gamekeepers are, as a rule, extremely tenacious of im- 
parting reliable information, or any information, that can 
be taken as of much value ; most of these people are 
shrewd, and pretend to have some wonderful and mysterious 
secret. They frequently mislead, by their crafty and un- 
principled information, those who seek it, thus rendering 
their statements unworthy of the attention so often be- 
stowed upon them. Many of the so-called specifics are 
decoctions of various noxious herbs, roots, etc., and no 
doubt, in some instances, do destroy the parasites in the 
trachea, but, unfortunately, they at the same time com- 
pletely undermine the constitution of the young birds ; 
therefore the much-vaunted remedy is little or no better 
than the disease. Other means are often resorted to in 
order to rid the chicks of these fearful tormentors, such as 
giving them camphor pills, turpentine, tobacco-water and 
tobacco-smoke, and putting them in a box and shaking 
fine lime-dust among them, which they inhale while in 
the act of breathing ; this caustic powder will kill or 
cause to be expelled the worms, and as frequently will kill 
the chicks. Another plan is by inserting into the trachea 
a feather oiled and dipped into finely-powdered salt or 
tobacco-water, and by a twist round draw out the worms ; 
to accomplish this object the dried tongue of a wood- 
pecker is not unfrequently used. In fact, there is no end 
to the so-named cures for this most troublesome disease ; a 
few may succeed, but the greater part fail, in spite of the 
most anxious perseverance and attention. 

It will be, it is hoped, shown that this destructive com- 
plaint can be avoided by attending strictly to one very 
simple rule — viz. that all water used in the food or pre- 
paration of the food should be boiled before it is so used. 
The object aimed at by boiling the water is the destruc- 
tion of the eggs or germs of the parasite. 

This means of preventing the disease first suggested 
289 Tj 


itself to the writer, by the many instances of the immunity 
of the young birds from this much-dreaded pest through 
the frequent use, at different breeding stations, of various 
kinds of decoctions or infusions of herb roots, etc. ; but, at 
the same time, many of the chicks suffered on account of 
the nauseous drink and medicinal food, thus rendering the 
attempt at prevention only a partial success. 

It, however, suddenly occurred to him that the boiling of 
the water used in the preparation of the decoctions was 
probably the secret of the success, and subsequent con- 
siderable experience has fully confirmed this opinion, and 
he is induced to advise its adoption, trusting to hear the 
result when fully and fairly tried upon a more general and 
extensive scale : it must be admitted that no harm can 
arise by its adoption, and the little additional trouble is 
one of its strongest recommendations. The floor or ground 
upon which the chicks are first allowed to run should be 
covered with finely-sifted dry burnt earth or sand, free from 
all kinds of growing vegetation ; for there is no doubt that 
the spores or germs of the parasite are taken up by the 
chicks in the water or heavy dew and moisture that hangs 
upon the plants, etc. Much depends upon the locality, 
the state of the atmosphere, the temperature, and also 
upon the freshness or staleness of the spot ; the shifting 
from place to place, season after season, has always been 
found most beneficial, but if the ground be freshly covered 
with recently-burnt earth, it is rendered perfectly fresh, 
and much trouble and risk is thereby prevented. The 
avoidance of the evil must be far in advance of the best 
remedy ever known or likely to be found. Opinions differ 
in reference to the various kinds of food used to raise 
chicks, be they pheasants, fowls, or other Gallince ; much 
depends upon the situation and circumstances, and success 
is obtained in various ways. As a general rule the greater 
variety in the food and the more frequently it is changed, 



the better. Overfeeding and want of exercise are the 
frequent cause of failure, but upon the skill and judg- 
ment of the feeder all depends, no fixed rule can apply in 
any case. The weather, if it be damp and cold, or dry and 
hot, necessitates change in and attention to the manage- 
ment of the birds. But, above all, cleanliness is of the 
utmost importance, and must be most strictly observed, 
and nothing is more likely to prove fatal than tainted or 
sour food. 

Hard-boiled eggs grated and mixed with a little fine 
meal, baked custard, made by mixing new-laid eggs with 
milk, mixed with meal, Indian corn-flour, a little pea- 
meal and oat-meal or barley-meal, should be the food. 
This mixture should be made sufficiently stiff to crumble. 
When they get older, fresh finely-chopped green food, 
ant eggs ^ or other insect food, such as grasshoppers 
and gentles. Gentles used in a green condition, that is, 
freshly taken from putrid flesh, are apt to scour or 
poison the young birds, and are therefore dangerous, 
if used too freely and without great care. On no 
account let them be used until they have been well 
cleansed. For this purpose they must be kept some days 
after they are removed from the flesh upon which they 
have been feeding, and placed in damp sand or fresh earth, 
to sweeten and purify them, and even then used very 
sparingly. The sooner the young birds begin to feed upon 
seeds the better, and, in order to tempt them, cut groats, 
a little millet and canary-seed, together with bruised hemp- 
seed, should be sprinkled about with the other food. 

^ Fresh ant eggs are preferable, but a good substitute are the 
dried or prepared ant eggs obtained in large quantities from the 
continent ; these, when mixed with moist food, answer very- 
well not only for the young pheasants, fowls, etc., but also for 
nightingales and other warblers. 




Having been asked my opinion regarding the habits 
and nature of the common white stork (Ciconia alba), and 
its adaptability to be kept as a garden pet, I have thought 
it would answer most of the inquiries if I were to write a 
few notes upon the subject. In the first place, in order to 
keep a pair or more of these birds, the garden must be 
one of large size, and all choice and small or delicate 
flower-beds must be so protected that the storks cannot 
walk upon the flowers and spoil them, not only by crush- 
ing, but by soiling them with whitewashy excreta, so 
freely given off by these birds. With reference to their 
tameness, I know of no bird that so soon becomes tame ; 
the fact is, they are for the most part tame bred, for in 
Holland and many other places the arrival in spring of 
the storks after their winter migration is a most welcome 
and cheering time. The birds alight on the house-tops, 
and visit the streets and market-places about the towns 
and country houses, and no one attempts or dares to molest 
or injure them. They are so perfectly at home and so kindly 
received that they at once repair their old nests, which are 
generally on the highest part of the houses or other build- 
ings, the nests being composed of sticks and all sorts of 
dry rubbish, on which they lay three or four white eggs. 
In about a month they hatch and the young are reared, 
the old birds feeding them upon rats, mice, frogs, fish, 
young water- fowl, reptiles, aquatic insects, worms, and any 



kind of offal or other animal substances. Now, although 
the stork is naturally tame, it is not exactly the sort of 
bird of which to make a pet — at least for children. Its 
sharp and pointed bill is very apt to be used and directed 
towards the eyes of any one who may attempt to take any 
kind of liberty with it, or in any way interfere with the 
liberty it takes in trespassing on or about the premises. 
The bird is, however, easily driven off, and rarely offers any 
resistance. The stork will bear our winter tolerably well, 
considering that the habits of the bird are migratory, leav- 
ing the northern parts of Europe about the month of Sep- 
tember to pass the winter in Northern Africa, Egypt 
being visited by large numbers. It is only by constant 
attention, however, to provide it with food during the frost 
and hard weather that the bird can be kept, and an open dry 
shed for the bird to take shelter in is about all that has to 
be supplied. While upon the subject of tame pets, I may 
mention that my experience (which is somewhat extensive) 
has convinced me of the danger that may be encountered 
by placing too much reliance upon the good-nature of 
very tame animals. A tame stag during the rutting 
season is a caution, and if you meet him alone, you soon 
find it necessary to retire. Few ruminating animals, 
during a certain part of the year, are to be trusted, and the 
tamer they are at other times renders them the more 
to be feared. Having no fear, they generally attack you, 
whereas animals that are perfectly wild fear you, and 
rather fly from you ; in fact, in most instances you find 
it difficult to get near them. 




Teumpeters are great pets, and well they may be, not 
only on account of their wonderful intelligence, but they 
are beautiful in form, and delightful in colour; most 
inquisitive and easily taught to attend to other birds. I 
have met with one that was fond of rearing chickens ; it 
would walk about, pick up and drop morsels of food 
to the little chickens that surrounded their long-legged 
foster-mother. The trumpeter is fond of society, and will 
follow the person about to whom it becomes attached. 



The species of swans are somewhat limited in number. 
The common tame swan, the best-known of all, has been 
recognized as an ornament on the various rivers and lakes, 
both public and private, for many generations ; but unless 
these birds are pinioned, that is, the primaries of one 
wing kept short or the primaries removed by separating 
them from the wing at the carpal joint, the birds are apt 
to stray and fly from their homes. 

There are two other species which are met with 
occasionally in England, the Hooper and the Bewick swan. 
There is also the Black swan of Australia, the Black- 
necked swan of Chili and the Falkland Islands, a small 
species of swan called the Coscoroba, also a native of 
Chili, and the Trumpeter of North America. 

The swan has been considered and regarded by some 
persons as a domestic bird. The question may be asked. 
What is a domestic bird ? 

In the first place, unless the swan is mutilated and 
deprived of the power of flight, so soon as it is adult 
it reverts to the wild nature and disposition of the 

It is not on this account, alone, that it can be argued 
that the swan is not a domestic bird ; there are other 
reasons to be advanced in order to show that the species 
has not undergone any alteration in its size, plumage, or 
habits after being kept for upwards of four hundred years 
under control by the practice of pinioning, for unless the 
cygnets Were pinioned they would escape from their 



owners, if allowed the use of their perfect wings. I think 
these facts ought to hold good in support of the opinion 
that the common or mute swan is still undomesticated, 
because however tame it may be, the tameness of the bird 
is no argument that it is a domestic animal. 

It is quite true that the swans reared at Abbotsbury 
Swannery, the property of Lord Ilch ester, where! have seen 
two thousand adult birds and five or six hundred cygnets 
within a mile and a half of the spot where they were 
hatched, are allowed the full use of their wings. Out of 
this large number many occasionally desert his lordship's 
grounds. I have seen from two to three hundred 
deserters on the coast, about Weymouth and the Isle of 

It was well known to whom they belonged, as a large 
number were missed from the swannery; it was in the 
early spring of 1882, and a very large proportion of these 
swans was lost. 

In 1878 a case was brought by the Society for the 
Prevention of Cruelty to Animals before a full Bench at the 
Slough Petty Sessions, against J. Abnett, waterman, of East 
Moulsey, in the employ of the Vintners' Company, for 
having cruelly ill-treated and tortured four swans by 
cutting the mandibles with a knife and plucking feathers 
from the wings. 

Inspector Nicholls, Superintendent Whitehouse, and a 
Veterinary Surgeon went up the Thames on August 8,1877, 
to see the swan-upping. Hamilton, the Queen's swan- 
herd (now deceased), was marking the swans, and Hicks 
and Abnett were assisting. After a considerable amount 
of evidence for and against had been given, the Bench 
dismissed the case, it being decided that the defendants 
were not guilty of cruelty in carrying out a practice that 
had been in use for centuries. 




There is no doubt that the so-called Polish swans are 
sometimes produced from birds that are to all appearance 
the common mute swan (Cygnus olor). Many years ago, 
when at Cambridge, Professor Newton called my attention 
to a pair of common swans that had bred, and the young 
birds were white when hatched, and continued to exhibit 
all the characteristics of Polish swans. This leads me to 
consider the subject of albinos, for it appears to me that 
we have several varieties of albino birds and other animals ; 
in the first place, the pure albino may be described as 
purely white with pink eyes, having no colouring pigment 
in its system. Now I find a great variety of these con- 
ditions. The so-called Himalayan rabbits have perfectly 
white bodies, but black legs, ears, nose, and tail ; at the 
same time, they have pink eyes. I also find perfectly 
white guinea-pigs with dark eyes. Among birds I find 
purely white jackdaws, blackbirds, Java sparrows, and 
other white finches with dark eyes. All these varieties I 
regard as semi-albinos. I have thus arrived at the con- 
clusion that the so-called ' Polish ' swans belong to this 
group, and are semi-albinos, because they have the black 
marking round the base of the bill and the dark eyes of 
the common swan. 




When the first two birds of paradise arrived at the 
Gardens their plumes were quite short, say about 5 in. long ; 
the birds having moulted, the new feathers were growing 
in a thick bunch on each side, below their wings. The 
birds, however, appeared in good health, and were active 
and lively. I soon found how fond they were of meal- 
Avorms and other insects, they fed freely upon fruit, rice, 
etc. ; a little cooked meat was also acceptable to them. 
During the voyage they had been supplied with living 
cockroaches, and a tin containing a number of these 
insects came to the Gardens with them. Their mode 
of hopping about from perch to perch and clinging to 
the bars or wires of the cage, reminded me of a jay or 
jackdaw. They were fond of a bath, and were very 
careful in dressing and drying their fine plumes. The 
new feathers were about two months in arriving at full 
perfection, and it was a charming sight to see them in 
full plumage. When they uttered the loud call-notes, the 
first sounding like " cor-cor-cor-cor," repeated Tsith great 
rapidity and generally followed by " whark-whark-whark- 
whook-whook," and terminating with a low guttural sound 
pronounced with great energy, I was struck with wonder. 
During this vocal display the bird would bend the body 
forward, and straining the wings wide open raise them 
upwards, frequently over the head ; at the same time it 



erected the beautiful plumes, spreading them in the 
lightest and most graceful form, causing every feather 
to vibrate, like a flame of fire, that almost dazzled the 
sight. While this excitement lasted the bird would 
sometimes turn almost under the branch, or perch, by 
bending the head or neck very low and downwards. At 
this period the two birds would not agree ; they attacked 
each other, and eventually the aviary had to be divided 
into two compartments. 

The birds hop about on the ground like jays or jack- 
daws ; they do not run like starlings or magpies, which run 
on the ground, but when on the ground the long plumes 
are carried high above the back to prevent the points 
of the feathers from touching the ground. They soon 
became very tame, and would take food from the hand ; 
the sight of a mealworm would bring them down from 
the perch immediately. 

The moulting was extremely rapid, the fine plumes 
were thrown off in a few days, and the new ones appeared 
to grow all at the same time in a bunch ; it is therefore 
certain that these birds after they attain the adult male 
plumage lose it only during the annual moults, like the 
peacock and many other of these richly-ornamented birds. 



There are few animals to be found in a state of nature 
so wild, fierce, and powerful as most of the raptorial birds, 
such as the eagles and falcons, yet, strange to say, under 
careful and skilful treatment, birds of this Order are 
rendered perfectly tame and manageable in a very short 
time, in some instances a few days being sufficient. A 
clever falconer will frequently handle a newly-caught 
falcon and, within three days of its capture, feed it upon 
his fist. The great art is simply to handle the bird with 
such care as not to hurt or alarm it. The bird, bold and 
determined in spirit, finds its captor kind and gentle, 
using every means in his power to become friendly, offer- 
ing it food, and uttering kind and expressive sounds. 
By his skilful manipulation he renders the bird not only 
unable to inflict injury upon him, but prevents it from 
injuring itself by using the appliances made for the pur- 
pose. Finding useless the most determined efforts to 
escape, and its powerful bill and claws unable to inflict 
injury, it, by its bright eye and keen intelligence, quickly 
perceives that it has a kind and generous master, and at 
once, as a rule, becomes attached to him. In a short 
time it may be trusted with the full use of its wings to 
pursue and capture the prey at which it may be the 
pleasure of its master to let it fly. 

The whole of the secret in training falcons is simply 
to remove fear, or, in other words, to establish a kind of 
confidence, and no sooner has this been accomplished, than 



the bird's, boldness and courage returns, and it pursues its 
natural calling with the spirit of the wild race to which 
it belongs. There are many wild animals, however, whose 
delicate organization renders them unable to stand the 
severe test through which these bold and savage creatures 
pass so quickly. Many birds, when captured, are so terror- 
stricken that they are paralyzed, and for many hours are 
perfectly helpless, having lost the use of their legs and 
wings. Excessive fear not unfrequently has this effect 
upon many wild animals, and no doubt has led to the 
belief in the so-called fascination. For instance, a rabbit 
when introduced into the cage of a serpent may skip or 
hop upon its enemy, whose sudden start alarms the rabbit 
and causes it to remain motionless ; the serpent, taking 
advantage of this, instantly strikes at and catches its 
victim, and generally kills it in the most expeditious 

There can be no doubt about the instruments of death 
supplied to the brute creation being the most perfect to 
accomplish the end for which they are intended, and, if we 
could only ascertain the facts, they probably inflict less 
continued pain than generally may be suffered by animals 
that are wounded or killed by other than their natural 
enemies. For instance, most of the creatures that are 
preyed upon belong to the more timid class, and when 
seized, suddenly lose all power, in fact faint and become 
unconscious, and consequently are saved from suffering 
pain, dying in a state of insensibility. There are well- 
recorded instances of persons when seized by the larger 
kind of carnivora having lost the power of feeling. If I 
am not mistaken, Dr. Livingstone stated that he felt but 
little pain at the time the lion bit him, and broke the 
bone of his arm ; a similar statement was made by Lloyd, 
author of Northern Field Sports, when attacked and 



wounded by the bear now in the British Museum. Again, 
the rapid death of animals wounded by poisonous serpents 
makes their suffering but of short duration. 

I trust, however, it may not be supposed that I am 
endeavouring to make it appear that all nature exists free 
from cruel torture and frightful suffering from pain and 
misery, this state of things being wholly inseparable from 
life. All living creatures have been and always must be 
subject to casualties that from time to time occur to injure 
or destroy life. Sometimes it is fire or water, or the want 
of these necessaries, or by the changed condition of the 
atmosphere or other disturbance of the elements producing 
disease, and sometimes by want of food and loss of life. 
Added to these we find throughout the world a spirit 
of destruction inherent not only in the lower animals, 
but inseparable from the highest state of civilization. 



STORY OF pel's OWL. 

Much interest is taken in this class of birds, and great 
is the mystery and superstition supposed to surround 
it, especially by the most ignorant and untaught of 
every nation. This arises generally from the fact that 
owls roam about at night in search of food, their eyesight 
being peculiarly adapted to enable them to see in the 
gloom or twilight, and the structure of the wings being 
such that they can fly unheard. The noiseless flight, the 
large and glaring eyes, the hollow and dismal voice, heard 
in the still darkness of night in woods or in old untenanted 
castles or buildings, all tend to encourage and heighten 
the idea of supernatural agencies (the bird being often 
regarded as a ghost or a spirit of darkness), which idea once 
possessed is rarely if ever dispelled. The stoutest heart 
might quail if startled by a combination of these circum- 
stances, a.nd have a grave suspicion aroused as to the 
true nature of these apparently unearthly midnight dis- 
turbers,. No class of animals can furnish a more abundant 
crop of wild stories and frightful midnight alarms than 
the owls. As an instance of the former we cannot do 
better than give an extract from the Ihis, referring to 
Pel's owl (Scotopelia peli), vol. i. 1869, p. 447, which is 
as folloH^s : — 




(Sketch of Nero, the Owl, a " Feetish Bird," from the Biver Oamhia, 

Western Coast of Africa.) 

" During seven years' exploration of Western Africa I only 
met with one of the species of the owl ' Nero.' He was brought 
' a chicken,' full of pen-feathers, or rather down, of a delicate 
straw-colour, and very thiqk, from a lagoon in the Barra 
country. No native would admit ' Nero ' as a visitor ; and 
when the bird was installed in Government House the servants 
and head people came in a body to remonstrate, asserting 'he 
was a Gumbi owl,' ' a Feetish ' ! ! ! and would ' destroy and kill 
any object he looked on.' The chief groom (an old soldier, who 
had charge of the poultry) insisted that 'every cock and hen 
would go dead.' Strangely enough, an epidemic broke out, and 
carried off from fifty to sixty head of fowls ; and each day the 
groom placed the defunct birds on the steps of Government 
House to meet the eye of Mrs. O'Connor, seeming to exult in 
the mortality among the feathered tribe. ' You see wid your 
own eye. Missus, dat Debil Jumbi bird, he go kill all de fowls ; 
Govenor think he hab long head, but lie no sabey owl. Suppose 
you meet him in de stable, he see Nelly (Mrs. O'Connor's 
favourite mare), de horse he go tumble down dead.' Death at 
last ceased to reign amongst the poultry population, and ' Nero ' 
became my principal pet ; he ranged over the piazza, perching 
on the branch of a tree ; he was fed regularly fey the orderly on 
roasted fish, but he often came to the dinner-table and flew 
down for scraps of meat, bread-and-butter, which he took gently 
from myself or Mrs. O'Connor, permitting us to rub his head, 
crest, neck, and back, seemingly enjoying the caressing, but he 
would snatch meat or bones from the cat or dog, and when the 
eagle was introduced into his company he beat him in a most 
unmerciful manner away from his peculiar and original portion 
of the piazza, the eagle being one of the fiercest and most 
pugnacious of African birds, brought from the upper part of 
the Gambia river, near 'Wallie,' and when in vigour, able to 
carry away a kid or small lamb. ' Nero ' luxuriated in a tub of 
water, frequently washing himself, and perching on the rim 
until dry. He was wont to go out to the garden or fields, -^liere 
instantly an immense commotion arose among all the birds ; 
the larger ones flew round the owl, keeping a very civil dis- 



tance ; the smaller birds flew away, but ' Nero ' treated both 
alike with sovereign contempt. He would return of his own 
accord to the roosting-place in the piazza, and when put out 
and confined for some days, rejected all food, and pined until 
restored to his perch. Witli me he was as tame as any canary, 
and, after an absence of two months, recognized my voice when 
I went to his cage at Oatlands (Devon), appearing much pleased 
by my taking him out for a walk on the grass. Many natives 
from the interior told me they had not seen such a bird before, 
but they considered him unlucky. I really think 'Nero' is 
nearly sans any relations, and certainly devoid of all friends in 
Western Africa. 

"Sept. 13, 1859. L. S. O'CoNNOE, St. Mark's House, Jersey." 

Now, all the laughing at the superstition of the poor 
negro will not prove that the white population of our own 
country are quite free from the belief in, and dread of, the 
supernatural, and it is a great mistake to suppose that 
education and the so-called high state of civilization is 
a preventive of a tendency towards superstition. The 
educated can conceal, from fear of shame, their thoughts 
and impulses, but the uneducated and poorer classes speak 
openly and unguardedly and without the fear of publicity; 
thus the miserable fortune-teller is frequently exposed and 
brought to justice. How many persons of rank and fortune 
are daily being deluded by spirit-rappers, and other 
swindlers of this class, yet how few have the courage to 
come forward to admit their own folly by exposing the 
deception of which they have been dupes ! 

But, to return to the story of Pel's owl, and in order to 
illustrate the above facts, it is only necessary to remark 
that a living specimen of this species was brought to 
Europe ; its demoniacal character came with it, and, 
strange to say, the most distressing and direst train of 
misfortunes befell its owner, and he was reluctantly com- 
pelled to part with the bird. By many who knew the 

305 X 


history of this ill-omened owl, the misfortunes of the pos- 
sessor were attributed to this unfortunate Scotopelia peli. 

Another instance of the credulity of our race respecting 
the owl is the tale of the French chiropodist, who exhibited 
outside his establishment a living specimen of the Eagle 
owl (Bubo maximus), said to be expert in extracting corns. 
When the sufferer to be operated upon was seated the owl 
was brought in and taken behind a screen, the foot of the 
patient was thrust through an aperture in the said screen, 
the wings of the bird were felt to flutter around the 
limb, and the operation of extracting the com commenced ; 
the com being removed, the owl was again restored to its 
former position outside, and the patient departed in the 
full belief of the extraordinary power and skill of Bubo 


I occasionally receive an evening visit from a friend who 
has a great horror at being thought nervous. On one of 
these visits I propose, after dark, to take a walk round the 
Gardens, and he agrees to accompany me, remarking, at 
the same time, that it is very dark, but supposes I know 
my way about, and that there can be no danger on that 
account. We have not gone far before he begins to 
speak about the possibility of some of the animals 
haviiig escaped, and, probably, he thinks every bush or 
shrub is one, or conceals one. He expresses his opinion 
about the folly of being unarmed in such a place, when 
suddenly a most unearthly sound assails his ears ; it is as 
a loud hollow double hoot appearing above, below, and 
behind all at once. He grasps my arm and instantly ex- 
claims. What is that ? I reply to his question that it's only 



an old friend amusing himself, and as we come in front of 
the cage containing the great eagle owl I turn on the light 
of a bull's-eye lantern which I have before concealed. My 
friend, the great owl, has by this time set up his feathers, 
the wings being spread out and raised all round his face, 
forming a large disc ; his large, fierce, orange-coloured eyes, 
glaring from beneath his black horns, give the whole bird 
the appearance of a large face, beneath which my human 
friend believes and fancies is the body of the owl. As the 
light only allows him to see the face, he again exclaims 
Wliat is it ? not recognizing, under these circumstances, the 
well-known bird. 

A fine male specimen of this species was mounted, by 
my son Edward, in the act of displaying a full front to a 
dog. It is now in the British Museum. Originally it 
formed part of the exhibits at the 1862 Exhibition. 




Year after year I had tried without success to rear from 
the nest these very interesting and singular birds, and not- 
withstanding repeated failures, I had not only persevered 
in the endeavour to do so, but induced others to make the 
attempt. In these efforts I had been aided by several friends, 
and among others Mr. R. J. L. Price, of Merionethshire, a 
Fellow of the Society. This gentleman kindly forwarded 
the nests of young birds, and, from time to time, by trying 
almost every kind of insect and other food, I succeeded for 
a while to rear the birds, but just when my efforts appeared 
likely to succeed, a change would take place and the birds 
would die one after another. Sometimes they would get 
too wet and die, apparently, of cramp ; others that had 
been kept away from the water wasted and died of ex- 
haustion. It was quite evident that I had not discovered 
a food that suited them ; they had been tried with the 
usual food for most insect-eating birds, such as scraped 
beef and hard-boiled eggs, ant eggs, mealworms, spiders, 
flies, beetles, aquatic snails, shrimps, salmon spawn, and 
many other mixtures, but all failed, until my clerk and 
assistant, Mr. Arthur Thomson, who had taken as much 
interest in rearing these birds as myself, hit upon the idea 
of scalding the mealworms, and tried it. It was soon 
apparent that in this condition the mealworms could be 
digested, while in a raw or living state they (especially 
their hard skins) would pass through the birds in a hard 



and undigested condition. From this moment I had 
but little trouble. The birds fed greedily upon the half- 
boiled mealworms, and I soon found them ready to leave 
the nest. I accordingly fitted up a cage, having the nest 
under a rock in one corner and a shallow pan at the other 
end of the cage, in which the birds soon began to dive and 
swim about. From the time they took to feeding them- 
selves the food was greatly varied by introducing caddis- 
worms, and other aquatic insects of small size found among 
the weeds. This afforded them much amusement, and they 
threw up castings, or pellets, after the manner of raptorial 
birds ; the pellets consisted of the parts of the insects that 
are not digested. It was most interesting to watch their 
movements, bobbing up and down, flying from place to 
place, and diving under water and extracting the caddis 
from its curious covering. I can no longer doubt the 
charges brought from time to time against our pets of 
appropriating a small portion of the young trout or salmon, 
for they are most expert fishers ; but I feel perfectly satis- 
fied they did not eat the roe or spa^vn of fish. As I have 
before stated, unless there is some movement, these birds 
do not eat anything they find. 

In diving, the dipper uses its wings as though it were 
flying under water, and has to exert considerable force to 
remain under long enough to capture its food ; it is so 
buoyant that it floats to the surface like a cork. 

The song of the water ouzel is said to be louder than, 
but, in other respects, much resembles that of the wren. 
Our young birds soon gave indications of their vocal 
powers. I can find no very correct description of the 
movements of the dipper, I take, therefore, this oppor- 
tunity of stating that the bird runs about rapidly, after 
the fashion of a starling. It jumps or hops a considerable 
distance, flies well, and swims like a duck. 



In May 1869 I obtained my first living water ouzel. 
Since that time I have had a great many of these birds. 
Some of them I reared from the nest, and I fed them upon 
boiled mealworms, the larvae of the caddis fly and other 
insect food ; but, as soon as they were able to feed them- 
selves and took to the water, they caught and fed upon 
very small fish, especially young minnows. I found them 
rather expensive pets, having to provide for a family of 
four, as they caught and devoured several dozen daily, and 
seemed to prefer live fish to all other food. I am not 
pleased to confess this, and I hope it may not cause the 
birds to be unmercifully killed, as I feel sure that these 
birds are useful, feeding, as they do, upon insects as soon 
as the young fish are too large for their tiny throats. 




There is probably no organ in the living animal that 
performs so important an office as the stomach. It may 
therefore appear incredible that, until I called the atten- 
tion of the Zoological Society to the fact that certain 
birds had the power of ejecting, not only the contents of 
their stomachs, but the inner linings of their stomachs at 
the same time, no one investigated the subject. When 
these facts were first brought to notice they were looked 
upon as impossibilities by some of the most able anato- 
mists, but the proofs of the statements were of such a 
character that they were admitted by all who were 
acquainted with the subject, and I take this opportunity 
of calling attention to the following paper of mine read 
before the Zoological Society : — 

" A few weeks after the wrinkled hornbill {Buceros corrngatus) 
was received in the Society's Gardens, tlie keeper called my 
attention to a queer-looking fig-like substance lie had picked 
up in the aviary. Struck with its appearance, I took it home 
and endeavoured to examine it carefully, and opened its closely- 
folded mouth. I found this fig-like bag contained plums or 
grapes well packed together, the wrapper or envelope looking 
much like the inner lining of a gizzard, somewhat tough, 
elastic, and gelatinous. Almost alarmed for the safety of the 
bird that had thrown it up, and at the same time having some 
doubt as to its real nature, I at once sought the assistance of 
our prosector. Dr. Murie, handing him the specimen and telling 
him its history. 



" Dr. Murie's report was as follows : — 

" ' On examination of the specimen, I found, as was at first 
suggested in joke, that the bag did absolutely consist of nothing 
else than the thickened semichondrified lining membrane of the 
gizzard. All the puckerings and indentations were more or 
less exactly represented, though less sharp in outline than is 
ordinarily the case. The mucous surface of the inner wall of 
the bag was slimy, otherwise perfectly identical with the same 
structure in a healthy bird. The surface outside, on that which 
might be said to be the sub-mucous tissue, was moist, com- 
paratively uninjured, and free from any effusion or disease. 
The rim of the mouth of the bag was irregular and shreddy, 
and thinned away at its free edge. 

" ' The soft egg-like bodies contained within this (so to speak) 
cast-up sac proved to be seven or eight discoloured grapes ; oi' 
they might be, so far as appearance went, raisins. None of 
these had undergone the process of digestion, but from their 
sodden aspect, I believe had been slightly acted on by the 
gastric juice. 

"'Positive of the nature of this queer rejected pellet, there 
follows the still more extraordinary circumstance that the 
hornbill should live and feed afterwards, seemingly not much 
affected by tlie loss of the inner coat of its stomach. Had I not 
myself seen and examined the objects, I would scarcely have 
credited the facts.' 

"Having placed the specimen in what I believed to be safe 
custody, I kept a strict watch over my suspected hornbill, and 
a day or two afterwards was rewarded by a second and very 
perfect specimen of this extraordinary package of fruit. This 
I at once, after carefully examining the outside only, placed 
in spirits, and am now able to bring before the meeting. Since 
I obtained tliese two specimens I have seen others, all from tHe 
game individual bird ; but, as the lyre-bird and others were in 
the same aviary, these were mutilated and destroyed before I 
could save them. 

"Now, notwithstanding all that has been advanced by my 
friend Dr. Murie, I beg leave to differ from him entirely : and 
instead of this most wonderful body being the result of indi- 
gestion, disease, or derangement of any kind, I have no doubt 
it is the natural secretion that is provided for this bird during 
the breeding-season, and that it is the means by which the male 
hornbill supplies the female bird with food during the time she 



is imprisoned by him while sitting upon the eggs in the hollow 
tree, in which, according to the most trustworthy authorities, 
the male builds up the entrance to the nest with clay. Dr. 
Livingstone was the first person, 1 believe, who called attention 
to this singular habit in the hornbills ; since then many other 
observers have confirmed the fact, both in Africa and India. 
Captain Tiokell speaks of it, saying that he ' saw with his own 
eyes,' although he previously 'thought it was a fable.' The 
Rev. J. Mason, in his work on Burmah, says of the concave 
hornbills, ' their nests are constructed in a superior manner of 
clay in the stumps or hollows of old trees. After the female 
has laid five or six eggs, the male bird shuts her entirely in 
with mud except a small hole, where she can only put out her 
head. Here she must sit during her incubation, for if she 
breaks through the enclosure, her life pays the forfeit ; but to 
compensate for the loss of freedom, her spirited mate is ever 
on the alert to gratify his dainty mistress, who compels him 
to bring all her viands unbroken, for if a fig or any fruit be 
injured she will not touch it.' 

"This remarkable passage at once arrested my attention, 
for doubtless it is the result of careful observation. The point 
to. be noticed is the fig-like appearance of the pellet of food 
that the male bird offers to the female, as it would be imi30ssible, 
at the distance the observer must be from the birds, that he 
could distinguish the little yellow-skinned bag from a fig or 
other fruit of about that size. Mr. Wallace says the entrance 
of the nest is stopped up with mud and gummy substances 
Referring to Dr. Livingstone, I find that on p. 613, Missionary 
Travels in South Africa, he says : — 'The first time I saw this 
bird was at Kolobeng, where I had gone to the forest for some 
timber. Standing by a tree, a native looked behind me and 
exclaimed, " There is the nest of a Korwe." I saw a slit only, 
about half-an-inch wide and 3 or 4 in. long, in a slight hollow 
of the tree. Thinking the word Korwe denoted some small 
animal, I waited with interest to see what he would extract ; he 
broke the clay which surrounded the slit, put his arm into 
the hole, and brought out a tockus, or red-beaked hornbill, 
which he killed. 

'"He informed me that when the female enters her nest she 
submits to a real confinement. The male plasters up the 
entrance, leaving only a narrow slit by which to feed his mate, 
and which exactly suits the form of his beak. The female 



makes a nest of her own feathers, lays her eggs, hatches them, 
and remains with the young till they are fully fledged. During 
all this time, which is stated to be two or three months, the 
male continues to feed her and the young family. The prisoner 
generally becomes quite fat, and is esteemed a very dainty 
morsel by the natives, while the poor slave of a husband gets 
so lean that on the sudden lowering of the temperature, which 
sometimes happens after a fall of rain, he is benumbed, falls 
down, and dies.' 

"It will be seen by this statement that the male dies from 
exhaustion, doubtless produced by the constant and continual 
reproducing, not only of the actual food taken by the male, but 
of the supply of nutritive secretion in which the same is 

"Witliout, however, allowing this strange statement and 
supposed discovery to remain simply, as many may think, an 
unlikely story, let us consider whether there are any other 
known facts bearing upon the point that will assist us in 
arriving at a fair decision upon this extremely interesting 

"That parrots, pigeons, and many other birds reproduce their 
partially digested food during the pairing and breeding season 
for the support of the female and young is well known. The 
tame male hornbill is particularly distinguished at all seasons 
by this habit of throwing up its food, which he not only ofi'ers 
to the female, but to the keepers and others who are known to 
him. Tlie male concave hornbill {Buceros cavatus), now in the 
Gardens, will frequently throw up grapes, and, holding them in 
the point of the bill, thrust them into the mouth of the keeper, 
if he is not on the alert to prevent or avoid this distinguished 
mark of his kindness. 

"We have now to consider the facts brought forward. In 
no class of animals do we find so many instances of the 
frequent and easy mode of casting up or reproducing the food, 
or the indigestible substances taken with the food, as in birds. 
But there is more than this to be noticed, for instance, in 
the esculent swallows. We know the so-called edible swallow's 
nest consists of a gelatinous secretion from the glands of a 
kind of swift ; and doubtless a portion only is used to form 
the nest ; the secretion is, in all probability, continued to 
feed the female and young, probably mixed with the insects 
captured during flight. There is also a similar secretion from 



the woodpecker, but in this case it is made to assist in the 
capture of its food ; many other instances can, no doubt, be 
brought forward, showing the power that birds have of ridding 
their stomachs of that part of their food not required for their 
nourishment. One very remarkable instance I well remember. 
A year or two ago I found in my garden, in a small heap, about 
a handful of the most beautiful blue pills, the size of peas, 
and studded all over with brilliant and shining blue fragments ; 
I Soon discovered that they were the castings of the flycatchers 
that had a nest immediately above the spot upon which I found 
them ; the charming colour was due to the outer skins of the 
bluebottle flies upon which the birds had fed. All the insect- 
feeding birds throw up pellets consisting of the refuse or in- 
digestible parts of the insects they swallow, just in the same 
•way as the Raptorial birds (as hawks, owls, etc.) cast up the 
feathers, bones, hair, and food of grain-eating animals in the 
form known as castings or pellets. 

" In conclusion, I think it may be fairly reasoned that it is 
much more likely that the food-pellets of the male hornbill are 
intended for the support of the female and young, and belong 
to the natural and healthy condition of the birds whicli produce 
them, than that they are the result of indigestion or disease. 
For we see that the power and habit of casting up from the 
stomach are of frequent and common occurrence among birds, 
and we also find that the secretions of the oesophagus are 
used as food for the young of many species of birds ; in the 
parrots and pigeons I think this is universal. 

" Another strong argument in favour of my belief is to be 
found in Dr. Livingstone's statement that ' the male bird, by 
his constant attention upon the female, becomes so prostrate 
and exhausted that a slight change in the temperature causes 
him to fall down and die.' 

" It cannot be supposed that the mere collecting food for the 
female is the cause of this fatality, it is doubtless the over- 
taxing of the system by the constant secretion of this nutritive 
matter, reminding one of the blood in the nests of the esculent 
swifts after the birds have been robbed of the first and second 
nests. But the most positive proof of finding this package of 
food is given, without, however, understanding its use, in the 
extract from the Rew T. Phillips' MS. before referred to." 

Having once established the fact, all that is required is 


attentive watching for the purpose of detecting and ascer- 
taining in what other animals this habit may be found. 
The result of close observation has brought to light the 
same habit in two species of birds belonging to a family 
far removed from the Bucerotidm or hornbills, viz. in the 
darter {Plotus anhinga) and the Brazilian cormorant 
(Fhalacocoraojbrasilianus). I first found the ejected stomach- 
lining from the darter, and in a short paper read at the 
meeting of the Zoological Society, February 1, 1881, 1 com- 
municated the fact. The cast epithelial lining of the 
stomach was exhibited and described by the prosector of 
the Society, Mr. Forbes. In my notice I called the atten, 
tion of other observers to this singular discovery, as I 
suspected the same might be met with in many other 
birds. I since find the cormorants have the same habit 
and power. 



At a meeting of this Society, 1867 (see Proceedings of 
the Zoological Society, 1867, p. 142), I read a paper upon 
habits of the hornbill, and called attention to the fact 
that, from time to, time, these birds cast up a substance 
that is found, upon examination, to be the epithelial 
lining of the gizzard. I now bring before the Society's 
notice another instance of this remarkable habit, in a 
very different group of birds. A darter {Flatus anhinga), 
the bird I now speak of, was received on July 18, 1880 
and since that time has appeared to be in 'perfect health, 
and has fed regularly. It has thrown up the lining 
of its stomach on three or four occasions during this 
period ; but unfortunately the keeper, not being aware of 




the interest that would be attached to the circumstance 
and not knowing the nature of the substance, carelessly 
threw the castings away. I happened, however, to be 
present when the last sac was thrown up, and secured it 
for examination, and have handed it over to our prosector 
Mr. Forbes, for that purpose. 

This remarkable fact being now known to occur in two 
widely separate genera of birds, induces me to believe 
that the habit may exist in many other birds, but it has 
hitherto been unobserved. In many cases the substance 
would sink to the bottom of the water, where it would 
soon decompose, and this may account for its not having 
been previously noticed. 
. I feel particularly anxious to call the attention of persons 
keeping cormorants, and of those persons visiting the haunts 
of cormorants, to this habit, as it is highly probable that 
this bird does the same thing. — (From the Proceedings of 
the Zoological Society, 1881.) 



Living examples of these remarkable birds (the con- 
cave-casqued hornbills, Buceros hieomis) were perhaps 
never before 1881 brought to Europe in the adult state. 
They are natives of the Indian islands, and some of the 
large species are confined to Sumatra, Borneo, Malacca and 
Africa. Some of these strange-looking, heavy, and clumsy 
birds feed, principally, on fruit of various kinds, while 
others occasionally catch insects, small birds, reptiles and 
mammals. The voice in most of the species is loud and 
most discordant, the flight is heavy and laboured, and the 
noise produced by the wings while in the air can be 
heard at a great distance. Although possessed of enormous 
bills, these great birds are, in confinement, extremely 
gentle, and become very tame and attached to those who 
feed and caress them. 


One of the funny things that are from time to time told 
to me, was related by Captain van Diependre of the s.s. 
Baron Osy. At the animal sale at Antwerp, Jamrach 
bought a large ground hornbill, which the captain brought 
to London for him ; on its arrival, Jamrach looked into 
the basket containing the bird, and exclaimed, "My Got, the 
birt haf lost his pill," and sure enough the lower mandible 
was gone. Upon referring to the captain he recollected 



having found a queer-shaped piece of wood which he had 
put on one side before leaving Antwerp, and upon ex- 
amination he at once saw that the bird had lost the 
artificial lower jaw that had been made for him by his 
former master at Bordeaux, at which place the bird had 
been kept for a long time. This lower jaw had been 
fastened on by two small hooks and studs. Having got 
loose during the journey to the ship it dropped off, and as 
the poor bird could not pick up his food without the under 
jaw, Jamrach was obliged to feed it by hand until Captain 
van Diependre made another voyage to Antwerp, and 
brought back the lower jaw of this unlucky half-billed 




Alfred Swan, manager to Mr. Cross, a dealer in birds 
and beasts, of Earl Street, Liverpool, was summoned in 
October 1869 by William Henry Saunders, an inspector 
of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to 
Animals, for torturing and ill-using six parrots. Inspector 
Saunders was upon the platform of the Heme Hill Station, 
when his attention was drawn to a small box which had 
recently arrived by train from Liverpool. He found the 
box to contain six live parrots. Through a crevice in the 
box he saw that the birds were in a distressed condition 
and trampling upon one another. He felt it was his duty 
to get another box, and did so, and the birds were trans- 
ferred to that and water supplied to them. He found the 
birds were much distressed, three that had been trampled 
upon being in a most exhausted condition. The birds, 
after receiving the water, ceased their cries, which had 
evidently been those of distress. Upon the box was a 
ticket bearing the words, " Perishable, live birds.'' Both 
Mr. Cross and defendant denied there was any cruelty, 
and declared it was necessary to send parrots not in a 
large box so that they could do one another injury on the 
way. Counsel submitted several objections to the 
summons, and urged that if any offence had been com- 
mitted it was not in the jurisdiction of this court, but at 
Liverpool. He also questioned whether parrots came 

321 Y 


■vvithin the definition " domestic," so as to be dealt with 
under the Act. The magistrate said he should not decide 
against the defendant as to the size of the box, but on 
the question that they had not been supplied with water 
from the time they were packed, and their cries showed 
they were suffering from want of water. Counsel said 
birds of this description needed but little water. The 
magistrate said it would require strong evidence to make 
him believe that birds could be sent such a distance with- 
out water. It was not a case for a heavy penalty, but he 
should convict in order that attention might be called to 
the proceedings, and he would readily grant a case to the 
superior court if asked for. He merely, therefore, ordered 
the defendant to pay ten shillings and two shillings costs 

On this case I published at the time the following 
comments : — 

Having during the last thirty years kept many hundreds 
of parrots under my charge, I can say most positively that 
parrots do not require ivater. Many species die in con- 
sequence of drinking water. Thousands of the small 
Australian parrots are brought alive and in the most 
perfect health and condition from Australia to London, 
the food consisting of dry canary-seed alone. It has been 
found that the birds become sick and die on the voyage 
if supplied with water. The valuable collection of parrots 
in the Zoological Gardens of London (the finest in the 
world) is kept without ivater. The charge of cruelty, 
therefore, in the case of Cross was unfounded. 

This, however, is not the only wrong inflicted, the 
conviction was illegal ; the law, or Act of Parliament, was 
passed for the prevention of cruelty to domestic animals. 
Parrots are not . domestic animals. The parrots sent by 
Cross are all wild caught birds, and mere tameness cannot 



be construed into domestication, otherwise a tame lion or 
tiger must be considered a domestic animal. 

It may be as well, for general information, to endeavour 
to explain the meaning of the term domestic or domestic- 
ated. Domestic animals are those that have become 
subject to man, and are bred and reared for the purposes 
of food, for their usefulness, or as pets. There are some 
few animals that may be considered semi-domesticated, 
that is, half reclaimed from the wild state. The following 
list will probably include nearly the whole of the animals 
that can fairly be considered as domesticated, viz. : — Horse, 
ass, mule, dog, cat, pig, camel, llama, alpaca, ox, rabbit, 
sheep, goat, gainea-pig, com mon goose and Chinese goose, 
common duck and Muscovy duck, fowl, turkey, pigeon, 
canary. Semi or half-domesticated: — Red deer, fallow 
deer, pea-fowl, Guinea-fowl, pheasant, swan. 

All the species that are quite domesticated exhibit very 
great difference among them ; in fact, the variation in 
most of them would cause, and has caused, many persons 
to think and regard them as distinct species, instead of 
varieties of the same species. Take, for instance, the dog. 
The little pug or King Charles spaniel could hardly be 
expected to be the same species as a large greyhound or 
mastiff, yet such is undoubtedly the case. 

Had the names of the animals that the Act of Parlia- 
ment was intended to protect been inserted in the Act 
it would have saved a considerable amount of misunder- 
standing. If, in consequence of a few blundering mis- 
takes and convictions, the law is made to apply to wild 
animals, no sportsman, whether he be a fisherman, hunts- 
man, or gunner, will be free to pursue game, for to wound 
fish, flesh, or fowl is cruel, and sporting of all kinds must 
consequently be put down. 




One of the commonest and most frequent maladies that 
we meet with in parrots is the loss of the feathers. No 
doubt, in many instances, this is the result of skin disease, 
produced by artificial feeding and want of exercise, to which 
something more may be added, viz. the want of occupation. 
It must be borne in mind that we have in the parrot a 
very highly-organized and intelligent creature to deal 
with. A bird that listens with such attentive watchfulness 
to every sound and imitates to so great a nicety that which 
it hears, with a memory which retains those sounds and 
which it repeats for years afterwards, must have also a tend- 
ency to acquire a habit of amusing itself, which it does in 
a very unpleasant way as regards its own appearance. It 
is quite certain that the bird- may be perfectly healthy, 
and in good condition in every respect except in its 
plumage, of which to such an extent will some parrots 
denude themselves, that the only vestige of feathers to be 
found upon them is on their heads, which may be in the 
most perfect and beautiful condition, simply because they 
are beyond the reach of his bill. If the supposed disease 
of the skin prevents the feathers growing on the body of 
the bird, would not this same disease extend to the skin of 
the head ? Long experience has shown the writer that 
the want of amusement, proper food, and exercise produce 
these unpleasant and unsightly conditions. It may be 
reasonably supposed that want of proper food and exercise 
would be productive of diseases, and in many cases it is so, 
but more generally the want of amusement is the chief 
cause of a bird biting off his feathers. May not the habit, 
in the human species, of biting the finger-nails be brought 
on through the want of employment, and not considered as 



a skin disease ? It may at times arise from a peculiar 
temperament, and be quite beyond the skill of the doctor 
to advise or find a remedy, as it is done almost without the 
knowledge of the individual who has acquired the habit, 
which appears analogous, if not quite identical, with that 
of feather biting. There is no doubt that some of these 
nail-biters, after they have nibbled to the quick their 
nails, would, had they feathers, soon reduce them to 

Treatment. — The old Story, what to Eat, Drink, and 
Avoid. — Feed the birds that bite their feathers upon 
canary-seed and water, which afford good and wholesome 
diet. As each seed requires to be shelled it occupies a con- 
siderable part of the day to obtain a sufficient supply of 
food; thus amusement, in part, is given, but in the case of 
, the bird being unused to this seed care must be taken not 
suddenly to change its usual food, otherwise the risk may 
be run of half-starving a pet bird. Avoid hemp-seed, 
meat, fat, bones, and all kinds of food likely to produce 
irritation ; in warm weather let the bird be well syringed 
with cold water every day, a common garden syringe being 
used. This opera);ion must, however, be performed with 
judgment and caution; the bird must not be suddenly 
exposed to it, care and a daily increase being necessary, 
otherwise a fatal result may ensue ; a slight sprinkle 
being given on the first day or two. Caution must be 
taken not to expose the bird in a cold or draughty place 
after the bath, and let it dry itself in the sun. The bath 
should never be given after the middle of the day, and 
on no account in cold or wet weather ; the bird left in 
the open air during a warm shower of rain would be the 
best bath it could have. This treatment, with the cooling 
food, canary-seed and water, is the best and most success- 
ful one yet met with in preventing and curing the habit 



of destroying the feather in parrots. There is a great 
variety of food generally given to parrots, and most of 
them thrive and do well upon hemp and canary-seed, 
boiled Indian corn, scalded bread or biscuit, fruit, nuts, 
and vegetable substances ; sometimes (but rarely) a little 
raw meat (not fat) is good for them. 


One of the oldest fallacies is the notion that in order to 
induce a wild caught bird to sing, it was a practice of the 
cruel bird-fanciers to put out the eyes of the birds with 
red-hot needles. 

Under these circumstances I deny that any wild caught 
bird, say the nightingale or robin, would live after such 
a cruel operation. 

It is sometimes difficult to induce these birds when first 
captured to take food, and if deprived of their sight it is 
positively certain they would be starved to death. I 
have no doubt the origin of the story is traceable to an 
old book translated from the German describing the 
treatment of fresh-caught nightingales. The book to 
which I refer must have been published more than a 
hundred years ago. In it is given a description of the 
caging of nightingales. When newly caught they are put 
singly into a square cage of about 10 in., with wire 
front only ; over the wire front is fixed a thin white blind 
to prevent the bird being alarmed on seeing any one 
moving about. 

In the translation referred to was the odd statement 
that when the bird was put into the cage he must be 



blind ; the true meaning being, that the white blind 
should be afSfixed to the cage. 

This statement, in all probability, would be misunder- 
stood, and without doubt led to the supposition that it 
was necessary to blind the bird instead of the cage. 

In answer to a letter which is not dated I said : — 

"No one can be more delighted than I am at the efforts of 
so many to prevent the cruelty that was and is still inflicted 
upon the lower animals. 

"At the same time I cannot help expressing the disgust I feel 
upon reading some of the statements that are from time to 
time put forward, perhaps for a good purpose, but the effect is 
painful and the statements untrue. The putting out of the 
eyes of small birds with red-hot needles is one of these horrible 

" I have been acquainted all my life with most of the bird- 
catchers and bird-fanciers in England, and I can say, without 
fear of contradiction, that no such practice does, or ever did, 
exist, and that birds thus treated would die. It is entirely a 
false and cruel invention of writers whom I shall call Shudder- 




Having devoted much attention to investigations upon 
the subject of the supply of food provided by several 
species of birds for their young, I have collected many- 
interesting facts showing that, in some instances, the 
parents prepare by partial digestion, and, in others, by the 
addition of a secreted nutritive substance, the food intended 
for the support of their offspring. The incident which 
I ani about to relate I was certainly not prepared to 
expect, nevertheless, such facts as I now state have caused 
me little astonishment, as they appear to me to afford a 
solution to the well-known and ancient story of the Pelican 
in the Wilderness. I have heard that the so-called fable 
originated, or is to be found, on some of the early Egyptian 
monuments (I do not know where), but that the representa- 
tions are more like flamingoes than pelicans. A pair of 
flamingoes in the Gardens frequently showed signs of 
breeding, and were supplied with heaps of sand to form 
their nests, but without result ; nevertheless they appeared 
to take considerable notice of a pair of cariamas in the 
same aviary. These latter birds had a habit of bending 
back their heads, and, with open gaping mouths, uttered 
loud and somewhat distressing sounds. This habit at once 
attracted the flamingoes, and very frequently one of them 
advances towards the cariamas, and, standing erect over 
the bird, by a slight up-and-down movement of the head, 



raises up into its mouth a considerable quantity of red- 
coloured fluid ; as soon as the upper part of the throat and 
mouth became filled it dropped or ran down from the 
corners of the flamingo's mouth, the flamingo then bent 
its long neck over the gaping cariama and poured this fluid 
into the mouth, and, frequently, on the back of the 
cariama. Having seen this done repeatedly, I took an 
opportunity of obtaining a portion of the fluid and sub- 
mitted it to Dr. Murie for examination We placed it under 
the microscope and found it composed of little else than 
blood, in fact the red blood-corpuscles are wonderfully 
abundant in the otherwise clear and almost transparent 
glutinous fluid. That this did not proceed from any disease 
of, or injury done to, the flamingo, nor arise from, nor is 
produced by, any portion or part of the food taken by it, I am 
perfectly certain, because the bird is in the most vigorous 
health and condition ; but I believe that it was an attempt 
to supply food to the cariamas, just as the hedge-sparrow 
and other birds supply food to the young cuckoo, and I 
have no doubt if a careful observer had the opportunity of 
watching the flamingoes on their breeding-ground, he 
would find that this is the mode of feeding their young ; 
no doubt other food is also provided, but most likely mixed 
with this secretion. I think it highly probable that this 
habit was noticed in ancient Egypt, and, by the confusion 
of names in translation, the pelican was supposed to be the 
bird intended : in fact, I have heard that the representa- 
tion (which I am very anxious to see) is much more like 
a flamingo than a pelican. Again, a flamingo is much more 
a bird of the wilderness than the pelican, seeing that the 
pelican requires a good supply of fish, while the flamingo 
can live and does well upon very small insects, seeds, and 
little fry, and is found in places in which the pelican would 




From time to time very strange stories and extra- 
ordinary adventvTres are related to me by the many 
travellers and others with whom I come in contact, some 
of them bringing from abroad wild beasts, birds, or 
reptiles, and to add to the value of the interest of their 
specimens a long yarn is frequently spun. I have always 
been very careful, I may say guarded, in offering an 
opinion, even when I felt that I could not agree with the 
narrator, not wishing to have a disagreeable controversj% 
especially with a stranger. 

It happened, however, that one day I met some 
American gentlemen, among whom was one who had been 
travelling in Japan, and who talked loudly about the 
fowls he had obtained in that country, with feathers in 
their tails that measured 17 ft. in length. This state- 
ment appeared to me so incredible that I felt dis- 
posed not to let it pass without making some remark. 
Not wishing to hurt his feelings by throwing any doubt 
upon his statement, I said, " I have collected feathers for 
many years, and have some of the most beautiful as well 
as many large and long ones, but none approaching 17 ft. 
in length. If I could procure a feather of that length, 
I should be quite willing to give one hundred pounds 
for it." His friends looked at him with some degree 
of astonishment, and at the same time asked me if I 



were in earnest. My Yankee was not behind in under- 
taking to supply me forthwith, but, I remarked, that 
upon the production of the feather, it must stand the test 
of being drawn through a tub of warm water.^ This my 
friend did not object to, but after the lapse of four or 
five years my hope of being the possessor of a seventeen- 
foot feather has been blighted, and, I fear, never to be 

' Many feathers are fastened together so skilfully, that with- 
out the test I proposed it is almost impossible to detect the 



Apteryx ... 
Bitterns . . . 

Bulbuls ... 
Bullfinch ... 
Cariama . . . 
Cat-birds ... 
Crake, Corn 




„ Drakes 

„ Ducks 
Fowls, domestic cocks 

„ „ hens 


Gull, Great black-backed 


Distant bells 


Mimic crowing, besides their 

wild native notes 

Bellowing and distant thunder 

Cuckooing — " coo-koo " 
Whistling — " wheep-wheep " — 

" corlieu," or " courlou " 
Warbles, and mimics 
Talking, besides their musical 




Rattles, melodious rattle of 





Hooting and bill-snappers 



Piping Crows 

Musical piping 

Prairie Grouse 








Sparrows ... 






Titmouse ... 


Turkey ... 


Warblers ... 




In the feline animals the colour and markings are in all 
probability designed for a purpose, and that purpose is no 
doubt to afford these animals a means of concealment. 
The stripes and markings of the tiger when lurking in the 
long dried grass and reeds so assimilate to the surround- 
ings that it becomes somewhat difficult to see him, hence 
his ability to creep stealthily and unnoticed upon his prey. 
The same may be said of the adult lion, whose sandy colour 
enables him to remain unobserved in the sandy desert 
where he is usually found. 

With regard to the jaguar and leopard, who frequently 
hide themselves in trees, their spots and markings are in 
keeping with the adjacent foliage. It is well known that 
some of the smaller animals, such as hares, Arctic foxes, 
and ptarmigan, assume a change of colour according to 
the season and the locality in which they are found. The 
common hare which is met with on light sandy soil is 
distinguishable from the hare found upon dark heavy 
land. Among fish and reptiles, the colour frequently 
assumed by them is found to assimilate to the locality in 
which they may temporarily exist. 

Many interesting experiments have been tried upon 
insects. Wood, Wallace, and other naturalists have shown 
that the colour of the chrysalis of many of the butterflies 
will vary according to the situation where found. The 
assumed tint is a protection against their enemies, and 



the mimicry at it practised by these creatures is most 
wonderful. Now with regard to coloured natives of all 
nations in their wild haunts, they can move about in forest 
or jungle without being seen by a European, whose eyes 
are not trained for that purpose, the colour of their skins 
being a disguise for self-defence. 

The young of the tiger is striped like the adult, but of 
course less distinctly. The young leopard also resembles 
the adult in its markings. The spots, stripes, or markings 
are always present in the young of those species of the 
genus Felis both large and small that are so marked in 
the adult state. 

As far as my knowledge extends, the young of all other 
animals (except the domestic cat) exhibits traces of spots 
or other markings, although they disappear in the adult 



At the evening meeting of the Zoological Society, 
November 15, 1870, Dr. Murie read a paper upon the 
" Anatomy of the Manatee," and pointed out its remark- 
able form and its resemblance to other aquatic mammalia ; 
in some respects it is after the fashion of the porpoise. 
In calling attention to this subject, it may be said that the 
porpoise is a sham iish, or only a disguised mammal, 
having assumed the form and general colouring of a fish, 
and thus disguised he is enabled to swim and pass his 
time among the finny tribes, preying upon them with im- 
punity. This is doubtless the fact, for no other form is 
better adapted to answer the purpose of the rapid motion 
required to capture the active and swift-swimming fishes 
upon which the porpoise is destined to live. We have an 
indication of the fish-like form in the otters and seals, and 
in some of the latter the arrangement of the colour, the 
dark back and white belly ; but in the porpoise we have 
the external resemblance to the fish most complete, even 
to the dorsal fin. 

Much has been written upon the subject of mimicry. 
Mr. Alfred Wallace, Mr. Bates, and others have called 
attention to the close resemblance of insects to leaves, 
sticks, and other inanimate and animate things ; of one 
family of birds appearing to belong to another family ; and 



some of the writers have gone so far as to express a belief 
that this resemblance has been effected by the will and 
design of the creatures themselves : for instance, that a 
caterpillar can select for its hiding-place a spot upon which 
it assumes the cocoon state and assumes the colour of the 
surrounding object as a means of concealment ; much in 
the same way as the chameleon or many other reptiles and 
fishes. How far this may be the case remains to be con- 
sidered ; but an equally remarkable resemblance may be 
found in organisms far below the vertebrate or invertebrate 
animal kingdom. In walking through the woods in Surrey 
or Sussex in the month of September, when the surface of 
the ground is covered with the clean-washed flints, it is 
difiicult and almost impossible to distinguish the flints 
from a fungus that crops up among them, varied in form 
and presenting a whitish surface, and not only looking like 
a flint in its perfect state, but when broken up you may 
observe not only the thin white coating like the flint, but 
the black or dark-coloured inside, so closely resembling a 
flint in all but the hardness that one could not help call- 
ing to mind the remarks of others upon the so-called 
mimicry of one natural object to another. 

These resemblances are found abundantly in vertebrate 
animals, but among the lower forms they are endless. 
Many of the species of Polyzoa, for instance, assume the 
form and colour of sea-weed, moss, or corals. Again, 
among Orthoptera, we find in the family Phasmidce, or stick 
insects, such wonderful likenesses to dry bits of stick, as 
almost pass belief, and are only equalled by the family of 
leaf insects, of which Phyllmm scythe is a good example, 
not only in colour but form, which together with the veins 
and branching of the leaf are most singularly represented. 
In other instances, among insects we find the caterpillars 
of the family Geometridoi so closely imitating a part of the 

337 z 


branch upon which they live, that it requires very close 
inspection to detect them. In butterflies and moths 
especially, the colour and form is so frequent a resem- 
blance to the object upon which they rest, that only 
expert and trained eyes can see them ; persons unaccus- 
tomed to their appearance and remarkable mode of con- 
cealment are unable frequently to see them even when 
pointed out by the practised and skilful collector. 

Large crocodiles and alligators lying on the banks of 
rivers look like fallen trees on the rough surface of the 
muddy bank ; the chameleon and other reptiles have the 
power of assuming the colour of the branches and leaves 
upon which they rest, and thus escape notice. Many 
creatures select for hiding-places such as assimilate to 
their own colours, and with watchful eyes remain quiet, 
and thus remain unobserved. The striped tiger in the 
reedy jungle is not easily seen through the dead and dry 
reeds and long grass, the dark stems of which singularly 
hide and mingle with the dark stripes of the animal ; as 
difficult also is it to see the lion upon the sandy rocky 
ground, which it resembles in colour, as much as the 
ptarmigan in its white winter dress resembles the snow- 
clad mountain where it hides. All sportsmen know how 
slight a hollow in the ground, or how small a bunch of 
weed or twig, will serve to screen from sight a hare or 
other animal. The skill or cunning, as it is called, 
employed to escape detection by many animals would 
afford an inexhaustible subject. A bird of dark colour 
will stand in the shadow of a tree or other object, or squat 
upon the ground by a clump of earth less than itself, and 
yet appear to be part of it. 

All these are striking instances of the means of escape 
from foes, or to enable the creatures to live ; for the re- 
markable part of these deceptions (if they may be so called) 



consists not only in appearance, but they are carried out 
by actions as unmistakable as they often prove success- 
ful. For instance, those who have witnessed the perform- 
ance of the female of the peewit, and many other birds, to 
allure you from the nest will call to mind the cunning 
artifice so skilfully played. Of this a good example may 
be found as applied to the ostrich in Andersson's Lcihe 
Kgami, p. 254, plate 7. 

Many insects and reptiles feign death, and well-recorded 
instances are not wanting in this deception succeeding in 
the higher animals. One of the means of escape adopted, 
and urgently recommended in Sweden for the safety of the 
hunter, should he fall into the power of a bear, is to hold 
his breath and feign death. Wild caught birds, such as 
goldfinches, linnets, and the like, when taken out of the 
trap and handled for a short time, will remain perfectly 
quiet and may be laid on their backs in the palm of the 
hand ; and while watched, remain motionless ; but no 
sooner do they find they are unobserved, than they will 
fly off. 

Sometimes the most helpless and inoffensive creature in 
fear will assume an aggressive and angry expression, and 
one of the most ludicrous sights is to behold a common 
lobster immediately after casting his shell ; his soft and 
swollen body and limbs are in great danger should he 
meet one of his own species in a perfect and hungry con- 
dition. When this happens he raises his large claws and 
makes sundry darts and starts towaz'ds his adversary, in 
the hope of driving him away. It not unfrequently 
happens, however, that his efforts are unavailing, and his 
opponent closes upon our soft and watery friend, and 
makes a hearty meal off his tender and juicy limbs. 

Reference was made above to the observations of Mr. 
Alfred R. Wallace, and the following extract from his 



contributions to the Theory of Natural Selection may be 
taken as a good illustration of this part of the subject. 
At p. 61 he says : — " I myself had the good fortune to 
observe scores of Kallima parelelda in Sumatra, and to 
capture many of them, and can vouch for the accuracy of 
the following details : — These butterflies frequent dry 
forests, and fly very swiftly. They were never seen to 
settle on a flower or a green leaf, but were many times lost 
sight of in a bush or tree of dead leaves. On such oc- 
casions they were generally searched for in vain, for while 
gazing intently at the very spot where one had disappeared, 
it would often suddenly dart out, and again vanish twenty 
or fifty yards further on. On one or two occasions the 
insect was detected reposing, and it could then be seen 
how completely it assimilates itself to the surrounding 
leaves. It sits on a nearly upright twig, the wings fitting 
closely back to back, concealing the antennae and head, 
which are drawn up between their bases. The little tails 
of the hind wing touch the branch and form a perfect 
stalk to the leaf, which is supported in its place hy the 
claws of the middle pair of feet, which are slender and in- 
conspicuous. The irregular outline of the wings gives 
exactly the perspective effect of a shrivelled leaf. We 
thus have size, colour, form, markings, and habits, all 
combining together to produce a disguise which may be 
said to be absolutely perfect ; and the protection which it 
affords is sufiiciently indicated by the abundance of the 
individuals that possess it." 

Another careful and trustworthy observer of nature, and 
one who, as an artist, lent his valuable aid by the very 
faithful representations published in the Student, Sep- 
tember 1868, illustrating his observations upon "Insects 
in Disguise," remarks at p. 83 : — " The chiysalides of 
butterflies possess a most astonishing means of eluding 



observation, their shells being photographically sensitive 
for a short time after the caterpillars' skins have been 
shed, so that each individual assumes the colour most 
prevalent in its immediate vicinity ; this interesting fact 
not being generally known, I last year reared caterpillars 
of swallow-tail and white butterflies for the purpose of 
obtaining chrysalides for exhibition at a meeting of the 
Entomological Society. The mode of procedure was sug- 
gested by me in Becreativc Science for July 1860, p. 
35, and is simply as follows : — ' Caterpillars were obtained 
and reared on their proper food-plants, and when full-fed 
were placed in boxes, the insides of which had been 
coated with colours of different kinds ; as soon as they had 
fixed themselves, the boxes were opened and exposed to 
sunlight in a window. The most successful specimens of 
colouring in the chrysalides were obtained when the 
changes took place on bright days, and when the in- 
dividuals were surrounded by a quantity of the same 
colour as that on which they were placed. Under these 
conditions, the markings peculiar to the species were 
greatly overpowered when necessary to the assimilation of 
colour; they were, in fact, completely overpowered, and 
replaced by bright green in chrysalides of the swallow-tail 
(Papilio machaon) and white butterflies now in my pos- 
session. I also exhibited a great number of chrysalides of 
the two common species of white butterflies taken from 
the stone-coloured sides of a house. Against one of the 
sides a grape-vine was trained, and here the chrysalides 
of both species were green, being affected by the light 
shining through the leaves. On the bare side of the 
house not a single green specimen could be found, and a 
glance at them conveys an accurate idea of the colour of 
the surface to which they have attached. As caterpillars 
are evidently unaffected by colour in their choice of a 



resting-place on which to undergo their transformations, 
it follows that this photographic power in chrysalides is 
most important, as tending greatly to make them invisible 
during their period of exposure in a condition of utter 
helplessness, which consists of from a few weeks to half-a- 
year, and in some exceptional cases of more than a year. 
The gilded chrysalides of Vanessidce and other genera are 
extremely beautiful, and my opinion of their gilding being 
a protection against birds has been confirmed by Mr- 
Jenner Weir, who says that birds will not touch them, 
evidently mistaking these chrysalides for pieces of metal. 
I have noticed particularly that the chrysalis of the small 
tortoiseshell ( Vanessa urticw) is golden only when found 
among nettles, for when on walls, palings, tree-trunks, etc., 
it invariably partakes of their colours and general appear- 
ance of surface. The same remark may be made with 
regard to the chrysalis of the large tortoiseshell {Vanessa 
polychloras), which, when found amongst leaves, is of the 
colour of a withered elm leaf, with a few silver spots ; 
when, however, on walls, etc., the whole colouring is dif- 
ferent, and the silver spots are absent. Now, it would be 
no advantage to these chrysalides to assume the green 
colour of the leaves, for they hang quite loosely by the 
tail, with no band of silk to keep them close to their 
surface of attachment, and the green colour would only 
make them like tempting morsels to birds, etc. It is, 
however, very remarkable that chrysalides belonging to 
this genus are affected by green leaves so differently from 
those of the generse Papilio, and Pieris ; the chrysalis of 
the orange-tip, so remarkably lengthened in form, appears 
to resemble the seed-pod of a cruciferous plant ; that of 
Papilio podcdirms is coloured, ribbed, and veined like a 
dead leaf " 

The undoubted fact of these creatures appearing to be 


what they are not, and as the instances above mentioned 
tend to show that they possess so great a power of as- 
similating, it is well worthy of our most careful considera- 
tion and investigation, in order to determine and ascertain 
if the possibility exists of elucidating this remarkable 


The statement in the Times of December 11, 1888, that 
a cuckoo was heard but not seen, reminded me that a few 
years before a country boy employed in the Gardens 
amused himself by climbing one of the large trees, where 
he was completely concealed, and he so closely imitated the 
voice of the cuckoo, that I, as well as many of the visitors, 
was for some time most perfectly deceived. This was at 
the time of the year when the cuckoo is usually in full 
song. I have no doubt that if my young friend were in 
the country in the depth of the winter, and were to exert 
his vocal organs in imitation of the well-known bird, we 
should have more letters corroborating the letter in the 
Times to which I have referred. 

A very remarkable occurrence once happened in the 
Gardens. A young cuckoo taken at Oxford was presented 
to the Society. To my great astonishment I found that 
a pair of hedge-sparrows had taken upon themselves the 
task of feeding this greedy young bird, whose open mouth 
and craving voice and insatiable appetite so completely occu- 
pied these two little birds that they entirely neglected their 
own nest and young to satisfy the wants of the stranger. I 
can only account for it by supposing that the hedge-sparrows 
and other insectivorous birds are imposed upon by the dis- 
tressing note and the expression of hunger exhibited by the 
young cuckoo's gaping mouth. If there is such a thing as 
fascination I think this a very good instance of it. 



In my opinion we should commit a great blunder in 
the too careful preservation of those kinds that would soon 
become a nuisance, and cause a very grievous loss in con- 
sequence of the depredations they commit. Among the 
foremost of these I may mention the common house- 
sparrow ; he is a bold, cunning, and determined thief, and 
for many years past every endeavour has been made in 
the Gardens to reduce their numbers, not only by shooting, 
netting, and otherwise catching the old birds, but by 
taking their young and using them as food for the more 
rare birds and animals. Yet, notwithstanding the united 
efforts of every keeper here, they are quite as numerous 
as ever, and had not those constant efforts to keep them 
down been resorted to, it would be quite impossible to 
keep (unless in sparrow-proof cages) any other grain or 
seed-eating birds or animals. They would so consume the 
food that other birds and animals less bold than themselves 
would be starved by them. 

We have had, however, some slight return for the great 
damage they do, by feeding the small hawks, owls, and 
animals on their dead bodies, and so regular has this 
supply become that it is depended on for the purpose, and 
renders their destruction of value, not only in keeping 
their increase in check, but as supplying a very necessary 
and delicate food for rare and interesting animals, that 



could not be kept on coarse flesh. I could mention many 
other vexatious losses and injuries inflicted by this wily 

How much property is annually destroyed in London 
and other large towns by the overflow of rain-water pipes 
caused by these troublesome pests who so frequently build 
their nests in the head of the water-pipes on the upper 
part of the house, it is impossible to say. The first heavy 
storm that comes overflows the gutters, the houses and 
furniture being consequently damaged with water. 

To carriage-builders (especially those engaged in 
railway-carriage building) they are a great source of 
annoyance. The doors and windows of the large jDainting- 
sheds are open for the purpose of admitting light and 
air ; the sparrows enter, fly about among the rafters, etc., 
and, by their droppings and the filth they bring, destroy 
the work of the carriage-painter ; the mass of filth, etc., 
falling upon the wet paint or varnish is most ruinous. 

Hundreds of instances of this kind could be noted to 
show how very unwise it would be to have a law to pre- 
vent their destruction even for a single day in the year. 
There are no hawks or animals in or about London to 
keep them down, cats are not about during the day, and 
consequently if their numbers were not to some extent 
kept in check they would soon become in many places a 
very serious annoyance and loss. 



The sense of smell in many animals almost surpasses 
belief. The development of the nasal organ in the 
elephant is probably greater than in any other mammal. 
In passing through the jungle it is a very common occur- 
rence for the elephant to pick up even small articles that 
have been used by man, and hand them to the mahout. 
It is quite impossible, in many instances, that these 
articles could have been seen by the animals. The re- 
markable fact is that these beasts do not pick up, indis- 
criminately, any generally common every-day substances. 

The faculty of following the footsteps of men or other 
animals by scenting over the ground that has been 
traversed, although many hours may have passed before 
the animal came upon the track, is possessed by many of 
the varieties of the dog. 

Ruminants, such as many of the deer and antelope 
species, scent a man or a dog at very long distances, hence 
the sportsman endeavours to get to the windward of the 
animal he wishes to stalk. There is, so far as I know, only 
one peculiar power that I believe man possesses more 
acutely than any animal, and that is his quick discernment 
of burning ; no matter whether the substance on fire be 
animal or vegetable, the human being detects it, and at 
once is anxious to know its whereabouts. I don't know 
any animal which appears to notice any sense of burning 
or takes any trouble about it except man. The only 
reason I can assign for this dread of fire in the human 
race, is, that to man it is one of the most important things 
known contributing to his existence, and one when not 
under his control that may lead to his destruction. 




In feeding the various kinds of monkeys it will be 
found that the more varied the food, and the more often 
changed, the better they thrive. Many of the Old World 
monkeys live much on fruit, leaves, tender branches, and 
buds of flowers. The ourang, chimpanzee, Hylohates, 
gibbons, Semnopithecus, and Golobus group are less insect- 
ivorous and carnivorous than most of the others. 

Most of these -will, especially during the winter, improve 
by the addition to their food of a little animal substance. 

I have found the following mode of feeding answer 
admirably for a large number of the common species : — 

Mix boiled rice, pea-flour, scalded bread, boiled carrot 
and potatoes, a little sugar, and some raw or boiled meat 
ground fine in a sausage-machine. Mix the above into a 
stiff pudding, break off in lumps as big as walnuts, and 
let each monkey be fed two or three times a day. Give 
them bread-and-milk now and then for a change ; nuts, 
biscuit, dry bread, wheat, peas dry ; Indian com, dry or 
boiled, fruit ; green leaves of many different kinds. 

Always take care that the fruit and green food be fresh 
and good. See also that the animals are not relaxed by 
the food being too moist. 

The New World monkeys feed more upon insects and 
small animals. Many of them are excessively fond of 



young birds or the eggs of birds. I therefore advise a 
greater supply of insects, such as mealworms, spiders, 
beetles, small birds, mice or flesh mixed, as before recom- 
mended for the other monkeys. 


The food of the Lemuridw consists principally of fruit, 
leaves, flowers, and probably large caterpillars and other 
insects. I much doubt their feeding upon birds or mam- 
mals. In captivity they thrive on bread-and-milk, boiled 
rice, fruit, vegetables, etc., etc. The fruit may be bananas, 
grapes, apples, pears, or any other ripe fruit in season; nuts 
of various kinds, figs, raisins, dates, etc. Vegetables such 
as cabbage, lettuce, potatoes (boiled), carrots (raw or boiled), 
yams, etc., etc. 


These animals are far more fond of animal substances 
than the true lemurs. In the galago we have a nocturnal 
habit, and they feed at night freely on young or small 
birds, mice, lizards, insects of all kinds, such as caterpillars, 
mealworms, beetles, spiders, flies, together with fruit and 
sweet food of almost any description. They like to catch 
and kill their prey, and are wonderfully active when 
allowed sufficient space to jump about. 

In captivity their principal food consists of bread-and- 
milk with honey, boiled rice, etc., etc., cooked or raw meat ; 
in fact, they eat almost anything that comes to table. 


Feed much the same way as the galagoes ; but are not 
active and quick in their movements. They are, however, 
good hands at bird-catching. Creeping slowly along the 



branches of trees at night, they quickly but with deter- 
mined grasp catch and hold the little birds at roost, and 
eat them alive, generally beginning by biting off the bill. 
In captivity they feed the same as the galagoes. 


In captivity the Felidm feed upon the flesh of other 
animals, and, as a rule, in most collections the flesh of 
horses and oxen is used on account of the large quantity 
they consume ; as, for instance, a lion or tiger of full 
growth will eat from 9 to 12 lbs. of flesh every day ; a 
leopard from 4 to 7 lbs. 

There can be no doubt but the most natural and best 
method of feeding these animals would be to let them 
have the body or part of the body of much smaller animals 
than horses or bulls, so that they could eat the small 
bones, skin, intestines and all, with the blood contained 
in the blood-vessels. 

Experience has proved that lions which have been fed 
upon the flesh only of large animals do not breed freely, 
and rarely have perfect offspring; the defective palate 
of the young being the most frequent and almost constant 
character of imperfection. 

The certainty of this has now been fully established by 
observations made on animals bred in captivity. 


Requires careful feeding. Never let them over-feed, 
or attempt to move them from one cage to another 
immediately after a meal. They often have fits if fright- 
ened or driven about. Small portion of beef, mutton, 
pigeons, and ducks' or fowls' heads, etc. 




Feed much the same as the ichneumon {Herpestes). As 
often as possible give bread-and-milk, or boiled rice-and- 
milk, to keep them cool in hot weather ; because during 
the summer, from want of exercise, if fed too well they 
get fat, often mangy, and out of health. 


Easily kept. They require fresh meat raw or cooked, 
small birds, or mammals, bread-and-milk, boiled rice-and- 
milk, with sugar or honey. They will eat ripe fruit. 


The animal appears to me to be a fruit and almost a 
vegetable feeder. Boiled rice with milk and sugar, honey, 
fruit, a little flesh raw, or better cooked, is the chief food 
of most of the individuals of the species I have met with. 
They are easily kept in confinement, and are mostly 
nocturnal in their habits. They must be kept warm. 


Feed as the suricates, but perhaps more fond of living 
animals, which they enjoy to kill and suck the warm 


These feed on the same kind of food as the Viverridce. 
They seldom eat fruit, but are fond of birds' eggs and 
insects ; they must be kept rather short of food than over 
fed, as they are very liable to fits in captivity. 




No difficulty is experienced in feeding these animals. 
The roughest of animal substances; the bones are de- 
voured as well as the skin and flesh. 


Wolves and foxes are kept with great ease. They like 
fresh food, but are not very particular as to what it may 
be ; small birds and small animals are however better for 
them than the larger kinds. The wolves can, however, 
tear up and devour the larger kinds of game ; consequently 
the flesh of the horse or any other animal will not come 
amiss to them. The smaller and more delicate foxes 
especially the "Fennec," require small animals, and eat 
even insects and fruit. In captivity bread-and-milk and 
cooked tripe is excellent food for them in lieu of small 
birds and mice. 


These animals will thrive well on raw or boiled flesh ; 
bread- or rice-and-milk, sweetened with sugar or honey. 


Sweet bread-and-milk, boiled rice, honey, fruit ; rarely 
animal food. 


May be fed and treated as stated for ichneumon (Her- 
pestes) and civet cats ( Viverridce). 




Feed as directed for Herpestes (ichneumon). 


Require a lighter food, such as fish and frogs ; they do 
not object to small animals, birds, etc. They require to 
have the free run of water, otherwise their eyes are likely 
to suffer. 


Will eat almost anything ; Nasua is perhaps the least 
particular. Meat of any kind, fruit, raw eggs, cooked rice, 
bread-and-milk, anything sweet, vegetables, roots, in- 
sects, etc. 


This beast is the most strictly fish-eating of all the 
bears, but in captivity it can be partly fed upon bread, 
biscuit, etc. At the same time, it requires a strong oily 
or fat food. Passing a great part of its time in the water, 
it takes much exercise, and must be well fed, upon fish, 
fat (horse fat will answer), and now and then the common 
fish-oil (as it is called), that is, seal or whale oil. 


The brown and other bears will do well on boiled rice and 
sweet food, bread, biscuits, roots such as potatoes (boiled), 
etc. They seldom require flesh or animal food in captivity. 




These animals must be fed upon fresh fish to keep 
them in good health. They are great feeders; a Phoea 
vitulina will consume at least 8 lbs. weight of fish per 
day. They must have free access to water, which need 
not, however, be sea-water or even salted. 


I have kept but few of these animals. They require a 
large supply of earthworms, and a rather large place filled 
with earth in which to burrow. They are therefore not 
easily seen unless the earth is kept in a glass tank ; you 
may then see them now and again as they come against 
the glass. They soon die of hunger, and are therefore 
not often kept in confinement. 


The hedgehog is easily kept in confinement; it feeds 
fi:eely upon raw or cooked meat, milk, and boiled tripe, 
beetles, mealworms and other insects. Small birds or 
mammals, eggs, snakes, and lizards are not objected to. 


These animals are fed on fruit, such as apples, pears, 
bananas, figs, raisins, grapes, and almost every kind of 
ripe good fruit, dates, and sometimes boiled rice. They 
require water, and must be kept very clean; let the 
bottom of the cage have plenty of dry bran on it, for they 
sometimes drop their food on the bottom of the cage. If 
this is dirty they soon become sick ; if they eat a little of 

353 A A 


the bran it does them no harm. They are rather ex- 
pensive animals to keep. They will eat a little boiled 
carrot, made sweet with sugar or honey. 


Mr. W. Jamrach informed me that on his way to 
England he fed the common Indian Fteropus upon fruit 
and dead birds, such as the various kinds of Ustrelda and 
Mania, that died on the voyage, and they did well on 
this food. 


Most of the squirrels feed largely upon nuts or hard 
kernels. Unless they are supplied with food of this kind 
they rarely live long in confinement. Soft food, such as 
bread-and-milk, although most frequently used, is not 
suited to a healthy condition. Let the food be dry ; hard 
biscuits, nuts, fruit, such as apples, berries, and vegetable 
substances. They sometimes eat animal food, but this is 
rather an exception, and it is better to avoid it altogether. 


Marmots feed on much the same food as squirrels, but 
are greater devourers of vegetables, roots, etc. They 
should be fed on oats and other grain, carrots, lettuce, and 
tender shoots of trees. Many rodents are great leaf and 
bark eaters, and persons who undertake to keep and feed 
animals ought to bear in mind how essential it is to prO' 
vide constantly a change of food for them, and from time 
to time find a fresh kind that may prove agreeable to 
captive animals. 




The beaver feeds on the bark of certain trees, together 
with the tender branches and leaves, etc. These form 
the principal food of these beautiful animals. In captivity 
they do well upon a supply of grain, biscuits, roots, such 
as carrots, mangold, etc. They must be provided with 
plenty of water and a retreat underground, in order to 
induce them to breed. 

DOKMicE {^n'Oxm). 

Nuts, fruit, grain and vegetable substances, form the 
food of this lovely group of little animals. In captivity 
a little bread soaked in water or milk should be given. 
The milk, however, not very frequently, because it is apt 
to scour the animal. 

PORCUPINES {HYSTRiciD^) (general). 

The numerous genera and species of the great family of 
Hystricidm can be all kept in nearly the same manner; 
some of them, however, are great fruit-eaters, and feed 
much on the tender buds of trees, but the kind of food to 
be given must always much depend on circumstances, and 
on the judgment of the person who feeds them; the 
season, and the different kinds of food obtainable at the 
time, dry clover, meadow hay, and good straw (especially 
when the grain is not taken away from it). This latter 
is most valuable for feeding animals that eat food of this 
kind. Many of the Bodentia feed much on ripe and unripe 
fruit as it falls from the trees. 




The HystricidcB are by no means difficult to keep in 
condition. They will eat a very great variety of different 
kinds of food, roots, bark of trees, leaves, nuts, berries, 
green food, bones; the large or small bones of horses 
or oxen, with a small quantity of flesh on them, are in 
cold weather freely taken ; they will cut through the leg- 
bones to get the marrow. They like a warm dry place 
to sleep in and retire to during the daytime. Hard dry 
biscuit, Indian corn, oats, etc., form great part of their 
food in confinement. They do not unfrequently breed in 


Every one is supposed to know how to keep hares and 
rabbits, but it is not always easy to keep them in con- 
dition, and to get them to thrive well in confinement. 
As a rule, they have too much moist food given to them, 
and this always proves fatal ; the drier the food the better 
they thrive ; and, above all, they require to be kept clean, 
and to be given plenty of clean fresh straw. Their food 
should be hay, clover, oats and bran ; a little green food, 
such as grass, cabbage, celery, parsley; and roots, such as 
carrots, mangold, or parsnips. For very young animals fresh 
tea-leaves mixed with pollard or fine bran is better than 
green food. Scraped carrot added to this mixture, to 
which a little oatmeal may also be added, has often saved 
a brood when the mother has been lost or killed. 


The food in captivity is clover or meadow hay, straw, 
boiled rice mixed with bran, roots, such as mangold and 
carrots, grass, leaves, branches of trees and shrubs, bread, 



biscuit, grain consisting of oats, barley, Indian com, etc. 
In using such grain as barley, it is better to boil it. 
Indian com should never be used unless it has been 
broken or boiled, otherwise there is great danger of its 
germinating in the animal's stomach ; an instance of this 
kind occurred, to my knowledge : the animal having 
swallowed the Indian corn without crushing it, the seed 
germinating in the stomach of the rhinoceros killed him. 


By no means easily kept in good health. These 
animals are subject to several disorders, and quickly go 
wrong ; if by chance their bowels become much relaxed, 
they have protrusion of the gut, and exactly the same 
misfortune occurs if they are constipated. It is therefore 
of the utmost importance that the food must be varied, 
and a careful watch kept as to the condition of the bowels. 

The tapir doubtless feeds upon fresh growing plants, 
and is always found near fresh- water rivers and streams, 
rarely about lakes. Now as it is quite impossible to obtain 
these plants at certain times of the year, recourse must 
be had to a variety of other kinds of food at all times 
attainable. Of these we take boiled rice, boiled potatoes, 
mangold, carrots, bread, bran, biscuits, boiled Indian corn, 
hay, clover, straw, chaff, bruised oats, beans, treacle, sugar ; 
green food, such as grass, cabbage-leaves, and small 
branches of trees. 

From this stock a quantity can be selected and mixed 
so as to suit the taste and inclination of the animal. 
Sometimes one will not touch the same kind of food on 
which another will feed freely and do well ; therefore it is 
difficult to say what is the exact kind of food for a tapir. 

Some fresh-caught tapirs do very well on yams or sweet 


potatoes, and refuse all other food. They probably die 
when taken on board ship if there is not a supply of this 
kind of food. 

As soon as the stock is consumed they require to be 
gradually weaned, and a little mixed food changed at 
intervals to entice them to eat. During the change much 
depends upon the skill and judgment of the person in 
charge ; care and watchfulness as to the altered condition 
must be strictly attended to, or the animal will be lost. 


The food of the giraffe in captivity must be as dry as 
possible, such as good old English clover-hay, crushed 
oats, beans, bran, crushed Indian corn, chaff with straw ; 
roots, such as mangold, carrots, and particularly onions, 
are good for them, and in summer a little green tares. 


Wild sheep require much care in this climate, especially 
in this locality ; those sheep from the mountains of Asia 
on the dry and hot or dry and cold countries must be 
carefully fed at all times. They are very liable to get 
out of order soon after arrival here. Qreen or moist food 
must be used very sparingly ; they are in the habit of 
becoming relaxed, and this condition in many of the 
animals proves fatal ; therefore the drier the food the 
better, such as good clover or meadow hay, oat-straw, 
crushed oats, beans, carrots, mangold, tares ; a little grass 
now and then would be of service. 

A fine young male (Ovis vignie ?) that arrived from the 
Punjaub was nearly lost as it took to purging, and eat 
but little for several days. Finding this, I gave it a quart 
of the best millet seed each day, viz. a pint in the morning 



and a pint in the evening, added to the other food, con- 
sisting of clover, etc. In less than a week the animal 
recovered its appetite, and became perfectly well and 

Goats are generally more hardy than sheep, but may 
be treated in the same manner. All ruminating animals 
should have a lump of rock-salt in their houses, they lick 
so much as they require and no more. There is no danger 
of them taking more than is good for them. 


The elk, deer, and goat feed on the same kinds of food 
as the camel, with an addition of a little crushed Indian 
com now and again, this as a change ; but in the case of 
the camel I find the Indian com has a tendency to increase 
the mangy state of its skin. I therefore avoid this kind 
of food for the camel. 


The food of the camel should be dry clover or meadow 
hay, chaff, bran, oats, carrots, mangold and onions. 
Camels are very fond of onions, and occasionally they have 
a quart or more in cold and bad weather. They should 
be fed twice a day, but they generally get fed with buns, 
biscuits, bread, etc., by the visitors. I find these animals 
do best when they are used to carry the children. Unless 
they are well under control and have a very good driver 
they are very dangerous ; an ill-tempered man should not 
be in charge of the animal, but one with plenty of patience 
and determination. 

If the beast is much ill-used he is sulky and trouble- 
some, but with fair treatment may be rendered very 
tractable. The camel's skin is likely to become mangy, 



and I find the best remedy is to rub in dry sulphur in the 
powdered state. Camels never wash, but they always 
have plenty of water near them and drink when they 
think proper. During the summer they have green food 
such as tares and grass, but not in large quantities. 


The hippopotamus is a greedy feeder. In warm weather 
its usual daily meal consists of a large supply of the 
commonest grass, with a feed of bran, crushed oats, chaff, 
and a few roots. In the winter meadow hay serves instead 
of grass, with a good supply of mangolds, carrots, and 
straw. A large tank of water must be supplied for the 
beast to swim in at all seasons, as unless it can have access to 
water the skin becomes diseased and cracks, and the life 
of the animal is soon endangered by the drying of the 

The hippopotamus born on November 5, 1872, began to 
feed with its mother a few days after its birth. It was 
supplied with boiled mangold crushed into a pulp, mixed 
with bran, sugar, Indian corn-flour, and fine chaff (cut 
meadow hay). 

Carefully avoid giving the animal fine, long hay; it 
collects in a ball in the stomach of many young animals 
before their teeth grow. 


The sloths, I have no doubt, are strictly vegetarians. 
I have never had one that would eat flesh or animal sub- 
stance of any kind, the nearest approach being bread-and- 
milk. They do well in confinement on green food and 
bread-and-milk ; they eat fruit of various kinds, and are 
very fond of lettuce, leaves of plants, bananas, figs, etc. 




Much like the ant-eaters, these animals feed principally 
upon animal substances, insects in the larva or chrysalis 
state, birds' eggs, young reptiles, and, in fact, some of the 
species will eat almost any kind of flesh or garbage. I 
believe that in some parts of South America they literally 
swarm in the neighbourhood of slaughtering places, eating 
the offal of the slaughtered cattle. No better food can 
perhaps be found for them than raw flesh, ground fine and 
mixed like sausage-meat with bread-and-milk ; occasionally 
some change being given, say a few dead birds or small 
mammals, some tripe or other parts of animals. 


Having for several years succeeded in keeping alive the 
following members of this family, viz. : — 

M. jubata, 

Two species of Tamandua, 

Two „ „ Oryderopus, 

I may fairly claim to be in a position to say that they can, 
without difficulty, be preserved in a healthy condition if 
the following instructions be carefully attended to. 

On the bottom of the den place a layer of good soft 
earth, tolerably dry, and at least 10 in. or 12 in. deep. In 
the den there should be a snug warm corner, or box, filled 
with dry straw for a bed. Grind, in a sausage-machine, 
daily, about 3 lbs. of raw flesh (not fat) ; add to this 2 lbs. 
of bread-and-milk, then well mix the whole together: 
An adult M. jiibata will eat this quantity of food twice 
each day. The small species will of course eat. less ; they 
also eat soft fruit, such as pears, bananas, and M. jubata 



will swallow full-grown mice, which should be killed, and 
held to his mouth head first. 

The earth should be changed as often as possible for 
the sake of cleanliness. 


These animals are more strictly flesh-eating than are 
the opossums, and although they can live upon bread- 
and-milk for a time, they thrive better on flesh. They 
will eat insects; and the smaller kinds of this species 
probably almost entirely exist on insects and small 

OPOSSUMS (didelphys). 

These tree-climbing animals feed upon a variety of dif- 
ferent kinds of food, fruit, and animal substances. On the 
former they are not able to live entirely ; and of animal 
and insect food they appear to be most fond. 

In captivity, I find that bread-and-milk, sometimes with 
egg added, and at other times boiled rice with sugar and 
ripe fruit, will keep them in condition. They are, however, 
most fond of young birds, as well as mice and other small 
animals. Raw or cooked flesh will answer from time to 


The young magpie can be fed on a great variety of sub- 
stances, such as raw or cooked meat, bread-and-milk, meal 
made stiff like dough, boiled rice, potatoes ; in fact, a little 
of everyiihing that is used at table ; but supposing the 
bird is kept where there is no table, then a little raw beef, 
or cat's meat, a hard-boiled egg mixed with a little pea- 
meal, will make the magpie a good supply of food for a 
day or two. The more the food is varied, like that of the 
rooks, the better. 




Hard-boiled Qgg, potatoes boiled, carrot boiled, and 
boiled rice ; the above chopped up and mixed together. 
Fruit, grapes, bananas, ripe apples, pears, or any kind of 
fruit, now and then a little raw meat, mealworms, and 
other insects. In fact, they will eat almost any kind of 
food, but salt food or fat must be avoided. 


The macaws eat Indian corn and other seeds, biscuits 
soaked or otherwise, nuts, fruit, avoiding fat or salt meal. 
Macaws require water. 


They should have a good-sized pond to wash and feed 
in. If, however, it is not convenient to feed them in the 
pond they will take the food out of a tub or pail of water. 
The pond should be supplied with clean water, as the 
beautj' of the bird depends upon being perfectly clean. 
They eat rather a large quantity of fish ; feed them once a 
day, each bird having five or six pounds of fish. 

Stale or stinking fish is dangerous, and all fish must be 
carefully examined for fear of fish-hooks. Many fish-eating 
animals are killed by the hooks sometimes left in fish. 


The herons are not active birds, they require water in 
which they will wash. 

They are fed on the cuttings of fish and raw flesh ; they 
will swallow rats, mice, frogs, small birds or, in fact, almost 



any kind of animal substance. I do not think it safe to 
give them any putrid or stinking food, for in their wild 
state they capture their food alive, and seldom eat any 
garbage as the adjutants and storks are in the habit of 


These birds are more easily fed and require less attention 
than almost any other birds, their food consisting of grain, 
biscuit, and water, to which may be added a little sand or 
gravel to assist the digestion. 

To each swan rather less than a pint of barley per day 
is to be given in the water, to this one or two handfuls of 
gravel may be added, and a little biscuit now and again. 
The ducks and geese are fed in the same manner, about a 
pint of barley daily being sufficient for four ducks, gravel 
and biscuit occasionally. 


In order to keep ducks in good health while in transit, 
I find it is best to mix some sand or fine gravel with the 
food, and to have one or two mats that fit the inside of the 
bottom of the cage. The mats are soft to their feet. By 
leaving an opening that will admit of the mats being 
drawn out and washed, they are easily kept clean, and 
also prevent the feet of the birds becoming sore. 


Almost as soon as the birds are hatched they require 
some soft food, and I have supplied them with fresh ant 
eggs, so called, but in reality the pupae of the great black 
ant, — large numbers can be obtained in most pine forests ; 
custard composed of the yolks of eggs and milk ; to this 



I have added pea-meal to render it somewhat dry, as by 
itself it is too moist. In a day or two I give the young 
birds a mixture of millet, canary, and crushed hemp-seed, 
with finely-chopped lettuce or other suchlike green food, 
and from time to time throw them a few mealworms, 
grasshoppers, or well-cleansed gentles; in lieu of these 
some finely-chopped meat, taking care they always have 
plenty of fine gravel, and also water. I also recommend 
that the water should be boiled and allowed to cool before 


To a quart of Indian corn mix one pint of wheat and 
one pint of barley. Of this mixture give about half-a-pint 
to each bird daily ; a little biscuit, bread, or potatoes will 
be very acceptable to them. Almost any kind of vegetable, 
such as carrots, onions, etc. ; a little meat, such as the 
cuttings of poultry, may be given them ; meal mixed up 
into pudding is also good. They require water the same 
as common barn-door fowls. Coarse gravel must be given 
occasionally ; a handful thrown in now and then among 
the grain food. 


These lively, graceful and beautiful birds are easily kept. 
They feed upon grain, insects, hard biscuit, flesh, and fish ; 
they do not, however, require much of the animal food ; 
flesh and fish are only as compensation for the lack of 
insect food. The grain most suitable for cranes of all the 
different species is Indian corn ; this may be given dry, 
but in case the birds are weak or freshly imported, it is 
better to have it soaked or boiled soft. They are fond of 
wheat and barley, earth-worms and grubs, snails, etc. 
They frequently breed in captivity. They should have a 



good-sized paddock, and plenty of dry rushes with which 
to make a nest, and they should also have a little pro- 
tection in the winter. A shed at night during hard frost 
is desirable for most of the tropical species. Some are 
sufficiently hardy to be kept out at all seasons, as has 
been the case with the following : — 

Common Crane Grus cinerea. 

Mantchurian G. Montiguesia. 

Brown American G. Canadensis. 

Demoiselle Anthropoides virgo. 


Feed upon vegetables such as cabbage, lettuce, grass, 
etc. Boiled potatoes, bread, biscuits, a little raw meal, 
young rats, mice, boiled Indian corn ; in fact, they are not 
very particular as to food, and they breed freely if properly 
treated. They require a good-sized place for a run. A 
shallow pond is good for them in which to roll and wash ; 
an open shed as shelter in wet and bad or frosty weather. 
They require a lot of litter, dead leaves, and rubbish of 
this kind for a nest. The male bird does all the nest- 
making and sitting on the eggs, which require seven 
weeks to hatch. The male only attends to the young 
ones. They should be fed on chopped green food, bread, 
hard-boiled eggs chopped up with the bread. In feeding 
the emus a bunch of greens or cabbage hung high enough 
for the birds to pick at is better than any other plan of 
feeding them, as they help themselves and do not trample 
the food under their feet. 


During the last twenty years living specimens have 
been under my care. Many of these have been distributed 



and placed in other collections, many have lived for years 
under my treatment, and several are now in my charge. 

I have fed them on a variety of different kinds of food. 
They will eat raw meat, living frogs, small lizards, earth- 
worms, mealworms, snails, young birds, and also mice. 

I have tried them with a great many kinds of vegetable 
food, but I have never found them to eat any kind what- 
ever. I have heard from persons who have kept these 
animals that they fed them upon lettuce-leaves and fruit. 
I have always had much doubt about their feeding upon 
this kind of food, and I found the animals died after a few 
months of this treatment, and I feel certain they were 
starved to death. 

It is well known that many of the animals of this 
family can exist for a very long period without food, and 
consequently persons not well acquainted with this fact 
were led to believe that the tuatera fed upon the vege- 
table food, because it lived so long. 

In the New Zealand Court of the Indian and Colonial 
Exhibition, South Kensington, was a model of the rocks 
and small caves inhabited by the tuatera lizards. I 
noticed also that these rocks and caves were frequented 
by small sea-birds, which selected the same places for 
breeding. I have no doubt whatever that the lizards 
would find the eggs and young of these small sea-birds 
most excellent eating. 



Aard-vakk, 175 

Aard "Wolf, 41 

Agouti, 103 

Alpaca and Llama, 219 

Amphibious animal, 239 

Amsterdam, diploma, 10 

Anaconda, 273 

Animals and birds, food for, 347-367 

domestic, 124 

killing wild, 208 

markings of, 334 

reasoning power of, 210 

Ant-bear, or Aard-vark, 175 

eater, the Great, 172, 180, 

Antelopft, Prong-horned, 245, 247 
Antilocapra americana, 245 
Apes, Great, 130 
Apteryx australis, 305 

ManleUU, 306 

Owenii, 280 

Ark, the, 12 
Armadillo, Great, 176 

■ Little three-banded, 180 

Arvicola agresHs, 102 

amphibius, 101 

Ateles, 151 
Auclwnia glama, 219 
pacos, 219 

Babinissa alfunm, 110 

Barbary Deer, 219 

Barnum and Elephant Bill, 50 

Bat, fruit-eatiug, 232 

Bats, 222 

Bear, Polar, escapes, 115 

Bears, Polar, 43, 155 

American, escape of, 154 

amusing animals, 153 

Beavers and their young, 96 

pa grayi, 95 
Birds of Paradise, 298 

preservation of small, 344 

vocal sounds of, 332 

Bittern, Sun, 3 ■ 

Boa constrictor, tale of a, 261 

£500 for a, 268 

Boar-hunt, a wild, 118 

Bmnhinator igneus, 200 

Bos frontalis, 242 

Bovine animals, 242 

British Museum, introduction to, 2 

Buceros corrugahis, 311 

hicornis, 319 

Buckland, introduction to Frank's 
father, 15 

Mrs. Frank, 19 

the late Frank, 16 

Buckland's Bear at Oxford, 1 8 
Bullet-hole, reducing a, 209 
Bustard, Great, 278 
Butterflies, various, 340 

Camel and Baotrian, hybrid, 86, 

Camels, 86 
Cainehis bactriamis, 219 

dronudarius, 219 

Canis jubatus, 40 

mger, 43 

primcemos, 40 

Capital portrait, 21 

Oariamas, 322 

Cassowaries and Cassowary eo-as, 

Cats, 128 

Wild, 128, 219 

Domestic, varieties of, 128, 

and Dogs, vagrant. 




Cavy, or Paca, 240 
Oermts barbarus, 219. 244 

elaphus, 219 

meximmis, 21 9 

virginianus, 219 

Chameleon, 196 
Cheetah, 35, 36 
Chelone imbricata, 189 
Chimpanzee, 134 

A Chimpanzee wedding, 135 

Courtship and wedding, 138 

Introdviction, 135 

'Joe,' 134 

Poor 'Joe's ' effects, 134 

Cliimpanzee's intelligence, 140 

strength, 141 

Cinchi,s aquaticus, 308 
Civet-cats, 41 
Cobra, 261, 263 

■ and the Sailor, 265 

Egyptian, at large, 274 

Cobra's escape, 182 
Cockatoo, 3 
Ccelogenys paca, 240 
Cormorant, Brazilian, 316, 318 
Ootumix dactylisonans, 230 
Cruelty, blinding birds, 326 
Crystal Palace Co., 6 
Crystophora cristala, 161 
Cuckoo, 343 
Cygnus olor, 297 

Darter or Snake-bird, 311, 316 
Dasypus gigas, 179 
Deer and Dogs, 3 

Barbary and Red, hybrid, 219 

Mexican and Virginian, hy- 
brid, 219 

Miisk, 3 

Virginian, 219 

Dendrolagus inustiis, 95 
Dicotyles tajagu, 109 

labiakos, 110 

Didunculus, 4 

Dinornis, 306 

Dipper, or Water Ouzel, 308 

Diver, Great Northern, 3 

Dodo, restoration of, 3, 282 

Dog and Deer, 3 

Bush, 40 

Cape Hunting, 40 

Dingo, 30, 40 

Esquimaux, 38, 40 

Pariah, 41 

Dogs, Domestic breeds, 37, 253 

and Foxes, 121 

Wolves, and Jackal, hybrid, 

Domesticated animals, 23 
Dormice, 108 
Draco volans, 191 
Duck, Common, 217 

■ Mandarin, 3 

Niroca, 217 

Pintail, 217 

Tufted, 217 

Eagle, her Majesty's, 3 

Eagles and Falcons, etc., 300 

Edentata, 179 

Elephant, 'Jumbo,' the African, 45 

' Alice,' 61 

accident to, 51 

at the Crystal Palace, 54 

— at Clifton, 55 

and rats, 56 

-^ — and thunder-storm, 56 
Elephants, 2 

and Sultan of Zanzibar, 58 

Bartlett among the, 53 

first experience with, 44 

food and growth, 57 

height, size, and weight, 60 

'Jack,' 44 

' Jumbo, ' the largest in Europe, 


taming African, 61 

Emus, 278 

Esquimaux Dog, 38, 40 
Exeter 'Change, 1, 4 
Exhibition, 1851, 3, 5 

Feathers, wonderful, 330 

FelidoB, 35 

Felis catus, 128, 219 

domesticus, 219 

jubata, 35 

leo, 219 

Icopardus, 219 

OTica, 219 

• servat, 35 

tigris, 219 

Fisheries Exhibition, 1883, 97 
Flamingoes, 329 
Food for animals and birds, 347 
Fowl, Bankiva, 217 

Domestic, 218, 265 

• Guinea, 218 



Fowl, Jungle, 40 

Pea, 218 

■ Sonnerat's jungle, 217 

Fowls, wonderful feathers of, 323 
Foxes, 3, 120 

and Dogs, 121 

Arctic, 328 

Frog, Green tree, 197 
Frogs, the Extravagant, 200 
and Toads, 200 

Gayal and Lord Derby, 243 

Geckos, 194 

Geese, hybrid, 217 

Geometridce, 331 

Ghost-like story, 14 

Giraffe, 3, 88 

Girling, the keeper, 263 

Glyptodon, 181 

Goldfinch, 232 

Gold watch and chain, 9 

Goose, Chinese, 217 

■ Common, 217 

Gorilla, 130 

■ Bartlett's Baby, 141 

the young one at Zoo, 144 

Grouse, Black, 218 

Red, 218 

"Wood, 218 

Guinea-pigs, 103, 258 
Gtinther, Dr. A. and snake-bites, 

Habits of wild animals in captivity, 

Habits of Bu-ds, 294, 311 
Hares, 332 

and Rabbits, 103, 356 

Hawks, 339 
Hedgehogs, 222 

Hedge-span-ow and Cuckoo, 343 
Berpestes griseus, 168 
Hippopotamus, annual dentistry, 77 

at Crystal Palace, 74 

—. — cleansing pond, 83 

death of Obaysch, 76 


escape and capture, 75 

how to keep a, 78 

Hunt's adventure, 70 

letters about baby, 80 

stealing the baby, 79 

taking dimensions, 74 

the first, 73 

Hog, Lilian's wart, 110 

■ Andaman, 110 

Domestic, 111 

European wild, 109 

Formosan, 110 

Indian, 109 

Javan, 109 

Papuan, 110 

Pigmy, 110 

Red-River 'Dick,' 109, 115 

Southern River, 109 

Timorese, 110 

"Wart, 109 

"West African river, 115 

• White-whiskered, 110 

Hornbills, 319 

Concave, 319 

Ground, stoiy, 319 

Wrinkled, 311 

Horned animals, 244 
Horse-dealing, 258 
Hyaena, Billy the, 15 
Hybernation v. torpidity, 220 
Hybridisation, 214 

Ichneumon, habits of, 168 
Icticyon venaticus, 40 
Incubation, 236 

Jackals and Wolves, 37 
Jaguar, 35, 219, 334 
Jerboa, 103 

Kallima pareUkta, 340 
Kangaroo, 91 

Grav's Jerboa, 95 

Tree, 95 

Lacerta viridis, 192 
Laplanders and Reindeer, 12 
Leopard and Wolf, 3 

and Jaguar, hybrid, 219 

Leopards, 35 

Lepidosiren, 220 

Linnean Society, Associate of, 10 

Lion-house, new, 26 

Lion and Tiger, hybrid, 219 

• killed by a, 29 

Lions, 1, 26, 27, 219, 334 

and Tigers, 26 

and Tigers, cutting claws, 27 

breeding, 31 

extracting bone, 29 

Lizards, ihemoir on habits of, 191 



Lizards, Stump-tailed, 191 
Llama and Alpaca, hybrid, 219 
Lobster, the great, 13 
Lycaon pictus, 40 
Ljaix, Persian, 35 

Macacus andamancnsis, 147 

cynomolgus, 147 

nemutrinus, HO 

• rhesus, 149 

Macaque, common, 147 
Macropus gigaitteus, 91 
Manatee, 336 
Mantell's Apteryx, 281 
Marmosets, 151 
Marmots, 103 
Medicago lupiiUna, 234 
Megatherium, 180 
Mephites americana, 253 

■ mepMtiea, 157 

Mice, tame white, 182 
Midas devilli, 152 
Migration, 228 
Mimicry of animals, 330 
Moloch horridus, 192 
Monkeys, 205 

the Andaman, 'Jenny,' 147 

Pig-tailed, 149 

Spider, 151 

Mooruk, the, 277 
Mus decttmaniis, 101 
Musk Deer, 254 
Myrmecophagajubata, 172, 176, 241 

Natural History, ignorance of, 321 
New Zealanders, 12 
Nightingale, 204 
Noah, the original, 12 
Norwegian Ponies, 212 

Ocelots, 36 
Orlhoptera, 331 
Orycteropus capensis, 1 75 
Ostriches, 277 
Otaria juhata, 161 
Ourang-outang, 3, 5, 130, 132 
Owen's Apteryx, 280 
Owl, Great eagle, story, 306 

Pel's, story of, 303 

Snowy, 3 

Panther, 36 

Paradisea papuana, 298 

Parrots, cruelty to, 321 

Parrots, treatment of, 324 
Partridges, 10 
Peccary, Collared, 109 

White-lipped, 110 

Pelican, feeding its young, 328 
Perfumes or odours of animals, 263 
Phacoehmrus aithiopieus, 109 

africanus, 110 

Phalaeocurax brasiliarms, 316 
Phalarope, Grey, 233 
Phasmidce, 331 
Pheasant, Black-backed, 218 

Cheer, 218 

Common, 217 

. Gold, 217 . 

Green-breasted, 278 

Impeyan, 3, 5 

Japanese, 217 

Lineated, 218 

Purple, 218 

Reeves's, 217, 283 

Ring-necked, 217, 258 

Silver, 218 

White-crested, 218 

Pheasants, Rearing, 288 
Phocafcetida, 161, 165, 166 

greenlandica, 161 

mtuUTia, 161, 162, 166 

Phyllium seythe, 337 
Pickpocket, the, 10 
Pig, Chinese, 113 

Japanese Masked, 111 

Pigeons, Crowned, 3 


Plains anhinga, 316 
Polecat, 256 
Polyzoa, 337 
Porcula salvania, 110 
Porcupines, 103 
Potomochmnis africanus, 109 

penicillatus, 109 

Proteles lalandi, 41 

Psophia crepitans, 294 

Ptarmigan, 334 

Pteropus poliocepJialus, 232 

Puff-adders, escape of a family, 264 

Puma, 36 

Punch and Judy, 7 

Quail, 230 

Rabbits, 103, 258, 356 
BaTia catesbiana, 200 
Rats, common, 104 



Reindeer and Laplanders, 21 
Reptile House, the old, 182 
Rhinoceros, and Charles John Aii- 
dersaon, 66 

and F. Buckland, 70 

iicarnis, 64 

character generally, 64, 93 

death of large Indian, 69 

Hairy-eared, 65 

Indian, 64 

in the ice, 76 

lasiotis, 64, 65 

remoTal of, 67 

sumatrensis, 64 

Two-horned, 65 

■ unicornis,'%i 

Rhinoceroses, removing two, 67 
Rodents, remarks upon, 101 
growth of teeth, 105 

Scent, notes on, 346 

Sea-bears, 13 

Seal, Are young born blind ? 164 

Common, 166 

• remarks upon, 161 

Ringed, 165 

Sea-lions, 159 

Serpents, 260 

Serpent's bite, 266 

Serval, the, 35 

Skunk, the, 157, 253 

Snake poisoning, 269 

Sparrow, House, 344 

Species, individual differences in, 

SquiiTel, 103 
Stoat, 256 
Storks, taming, 292 
Struthiones, 277 
Sultan's visit to the Zoo, 12 
Siis andamanensis, 110 

cristatus, 109 

^ leucomystax, 110 

papucnsis, 110 

scrofa, 109 

taivanus, 110 

— — timorensii^ 110 

vitattus, 109 

Swallows hybernating, 225 
Swan, Bewick, 295 
Black, 295 

Swan, Black-necked, 295 

Common, 295 

Coscoroba, 295 

Hooper, 295 

Mute, 271 

Polish, 297 

Trumpeter, 294 

Swiue, Wild, 109 

Teal, Japanese, 3 
Tesludo elephantina, 187 

grceca, 187 

Tiger, 2, 26, 27, 334 

cats, 36' 

in Bow St. Police Station, 33 

young of, 335 

Tight-rope dancing, 7 
Toads, Fire-bellied, 200 
TolypeiUes conurus, 180 
Tortoise, Indian, 187 

Common, 187 

Tortoises, 184 

history and treatment, 186 

Water-carrying, 184 

Trachydosaurus rugos^is, 191 
Troglodytes gorilla, 145 


Trumpeter, the,- 294 

Turkey, 217 

Ocellated, 207 

Viper, Russell's, 274 

Water, 183 

Vole, Field, 101 

Water, 101 

Vulture, Black, 14 

Walrus, first and second brought to 

England, 167 
Weasel, 256 
WoU, Aard, 41 

Antarctic, 39 

■ Escape of a Black, 43 

European, 41 

Red, 40 

Wolf and Jackals, 37 
and Leopard, 3 

Zebras, 13, 212 
Zoological Papers, 8 
Society, 2, 3, 8 


RiCHAnD Clay & Sons, Limited, 
LoNDOK & Bungay, 


The Play of Animals: 

A Study of Animal Life and Instinct. 


Professor of Philosophy in the University of Basel. 



By J. MARK BALDWIN, Pbofbssor in Princeton Academy. 
Crown ?>vo, 10s. 6c?. 


The Surplus Theory of 

Play and Instinct. 

The Play of Animals. 


Movement Plays. 

Hunting Plays : With Eeal 
Living Prey, Living Mock 
Peey, and Lifeless Mock 

Fighting Plays ; Teasing, 
Tussling among Young 
Animals, Playful Fight- 
ing between Adult Ani- 

, Consteuctive Aets. 
NuEsiNG Plays. 
Imitative Play, 

Love Plays among Young 


THE Aets ' of Movement 
and of the display of 
Unusual oe Beautiful 
Forms oe Coloues ; and 
OF Noises and Tones. 


The Psychology of Animal 

THE PLAY OF ANIMALS (continued). 


"Animal Psychology is regarded by many, somewhat con- 
temptuously, as a sort of amusement, from which nothing worth 
speaking of can be expected for the advancement of our modern 
science of the mind. I, do not believe this. In the first place, 
it is quite wrong to judge animal psychology mainly from its 
value for the interpretation of the mind of man, making second- 
ary the independent interest to which it lays claim. Yet, apart 
from this, such a study is valuable to the anthropologist in many 
ways, though it must be admitted that but little has as yet been 
accomplished in this direction. Unfortunately, many of the 
works hitherto published on the subject of Animal Psychology 
labour under the disadvantage of being strongly biassed, and 
suffer also from lack of method. 

" There are few scientific works in the field of human play — a 
fact to be accounted for, probably, by the inherent difliculties of 
the subject, both objective and subjective. The animal psychol- 
ogist must harbour in his breast not only two souls, but more : 
he must unite with a thorough training in physiology, psychol- 
ogy, and biology, the experience of a traveller, the practical 
knowledge of the director of a zoological garden, and the outdoor 
love of a forester ; and even then he could not round up his 
labours satisfactorily unless he were familiar with the trend of 
modern sesthetics." 

Professor Groos's book, " TSE PLAY OF ANIMALS," is 
the first work written exclusively on the subject from these 
points of view, and will be found of great value scientifically as 
well as theoretically. The author seeks to establish the concep- 
tion of play on a basis of natural science ; to develop a system 
of animal play for the first time on the biological theory as a 
basis ; to treat of the psychological aspects of play, and to in- 
vestigate the more subtle psychic phenomenon that is connected 
with the subject, namely, " make-believe " or " conscious self- 

Professor Baldwin, who edits this translation of the volume, 
says : " Professor Groos makes a contribution to three distinct 
but cognate departments of inquiry : philosophical biology, 
animal pyschology, and the genetic study of art. Those who 
have followed the beginnings of inquiry into the nature and 
functions of play in the animal world and in children will see 
at once how much light is to be expected from a thorough-going 
examination of all the facts and observations recorded in the 
literature of animal life. This sort of examination Professor 
Groos makes witli great care and thoroughness, and the result 
is a book which, in my opinion, is destined to have wide influ- 
ence in all these departments of inquiry. It is a pioneer work, 
and one of great permanent value.